CYBERSECURITY ZERO-DAY
Sunday 25th of February 2024 07:19:30 AM



Latest 500 Zero-day(s)

An Obsession With Impact: The Inspiring Journey of a Dreamer That Led to a Career at Microsoft
Bruce’s story unfolds in Cincinnati, Ohio. As a young boy, he had an ambitious dream of one day becoming the President of the United States. This aspiration remained his guiding star until he began his professional career after college. His mother, amused by his
New Security Advisory Tab Added to the Microsoft Security Update Guide
Today, we are adding a new Security Advisory tab to the Security Update Guide to meet our customers’ needs for a unified and authoritative source for the latest public information about Microsoft security updates and issues. We are continuously listening to feedback from users of the Security Update Guide. Our goal is to find new and improved ways to help customers manage security risks and keep their systems protected.
Congratulations to the Top MSRC 2023 Q4 Security Researchers!
Congratulations to all the researchers recognized in this quarter’s Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program leaderboard! Thank you to everyone for your hard work and continued partnership to secure customers. The top three researchers of the 2023 Q4 Security Researcher Leaderboard are Yuki Chen, Wei, VictorV! Check out the full list of researchers recognized this quarter here.
Microsoft Actions Following Attack by Nation State Actor Midnight Blizzard
The Microsoft security team detected a nation-state attack on our corporate systems on January 12, 2024, and immediately activated our response process to investigate, disrupt malicious activity, mitigate the attack, and deny the threat actor further access. Microsoft has identified the threat actor as Midnight Blizzard, the Russian state-sponsored actor also known as Nobelium.
BlueHat India Call for Papers is Now Open!
You asked for it and it’s finally here! The inaugural BlueHat India conference will be held May 16-17th, 2024, in Hyderabad, India! This intimate conference will bring together a unique blend of security researchers and responders, who come together as peers to exchange ideas, experiences, and learnings in the interest of creating a safer and more secure world for all.
Microsoft addresses App Installer abuse
Summary In recent months, Microsoft Threat Intelligence has observed threat actors leveraging social engineering and phishing techniques to target Windows OS users and utilizing the ms-appinstaller URI scheme. We have addressed and mitigated this malicious activity by turning off ms-appinstaller by default. Additionally, Microsoft has coordinated with Certificate Authorities to revoke the abused code signing certificates utilized by malware samples we have identified.
Azure Serial Console Attack and Defense - Part 2
This is the second installment of the Azure Serial Console blog, which provides insights to improve defenders’ preparedness when investigating Azure Serial Console activity on Azure Linux virtual machines. While the first blog post discussed various tracing activities, such as using Azure activity and Sysmon logs on Windows virtual machines to trace serial console activity, this blog outlines how to enable logging for Azure Linux virtual machines using Sysmon for Linux to capture and how to send these events to a log analytics workspace.
Introducing the Microsoft Defender Bounty Program
We are excited to announce the new Microsoft Defender Bounty Program with awards of up to $20,000 USD. The Microsoft Defender brand encompasses a variety of products and services designed to enhance the security of the Microsoft customer experience. The Microsoft Defender Bounty Program invites researchers across the globe to identify vulnerabilities in Defender products and services and share them with our team.
Celebrating ten years of the Microsoft Bug Bounty program and more than $60M awarded
This year marks the tenth anniversary of the Microsoft Bug Bounty Program, an essential part of our proactive strategy to protect customers from security threats. Since its inception in 2013, Microsoft has awarded more than $60 million to thousands of security researchers from 70 countries. These individuals have discovered and reported vulnerabilities under Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure, aiding Microsoft in navigating the continuously evolving security threat landscape and emerging technologies.
Reflecting on 20 years of Patch Tuesday
This year is a landmark moment for Microsoft as we observe the 20th anniversary of Patch Tuesday updates, an initiative that has become a cornerstone of the IT world’s approach to cybersecurity. Originating from the Trustworthy Computing memo by Bill Gates in 2002, our unwavering commitment to protecting customers continues to this day and is reflected in Microsoft’s Secure Future Initiative announced this month.
Microsoft guidance regarding credentials leaked to GitHub Actions Logs through Azure CLI
Summary The Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) was made aware of a vulnerability where Azure Command-Line Interface (CLI) could expose sensitive information, including credentials, through GitHub Actions logs. The researcher, from Palo Alto Networks Prisma Cloud, found that Azure CLI commands could be used to show sensitive data and output to Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) logs.
Congratulations to the Top MSRC 2023 Q3 Security Researchers!
Congratulations to all the researchers recognized in this quarter’s Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program leaderboard! Thank you to everyone for your hard work and continued partnership to secure customers. The top three researchers of the 2023 Q3 Security Researcher Leaderboard are Wei, VictorV, and Anonymous! Check out the full list of researchers recognized this quarter here.
Introducing the Microsoft AI Bug Bounty Program featuring the AI-powered Bing experience
Today at BlueHat we announced the new Microsoft AI bug bounty program with awards up to $15,000. This new bounty program features the AI-powered Bing experience as the first in scope product. The following products and integrations are eligible for bounty awards: AI-powered Bing experiences on bing.com in Browser (All major vendors are supported, including Bing Chat, Bing Chat for Enterprise, and Bing Image Creator) AI-powered Bing integration in Microsoft Edge (Windows), including Bing Chat for Enterprise AI-powered Bing integration in the Microsoft Start Application (iOS and Android) AI-powered Bing integration in the Skype Mobile Application (iOS and Android) Full details can be found on our bounty program website.
Microsoft Response to Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Attacks against HTTP/2
Summary Beginning in September 2023, Microsoft was notified by industry partners about a newly identified Distributed Denial-of-Service (DDoS) attack technique being used in the wild targeting HTTP/2 protocol. This vulnerability (CVE-2023-44487) impacts any internet exposed HTTP/2 endpoints. As an industry leader, Microsoft promptly opened an investigation and subsequently began working with industry partners for a coordinated disclosure and mitigation plan.
Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2023: Elevating Security Together
As the 20th anniversary of Cybersecurity Awareness Month begins, I find myself reflecting on the strides made since its inception. The journey to enhance and improve cybersecurity is ongoing and extends beyond October. It’s not merely a technological challenge; it is fundamentally about people. It’s about the customers and communities that we at Microsoft work tirelessly to safeguard and defend.
Microsoft’s Response to Open-Source Vulnerabilities - CVE-2023-4863 and CVE-2023-5217
Microsoft is aware and has released patches associated with the two Open-Source Software security vulnerabilities, CVE-2023-4863 and CVE-2023-5217. Through our investigation, we found that these affect a subset of our products and as of today, we have addressed them in our products as outlined below: CVE-2023-4863 Microsoft Edge Microsoft Teams for Desktop Skype for Desktop Webp Image Extensions (Released on Windows and updates through Microsoft Store) CVE-2023-5217
Journey Down Under: How Rocco Became Australia’s Premier Hacker
Fun facts about Rocco Calvi (@TecR0c): Microsoft MVR: Rocco is a 2023 Microsoft Most Valuable Researcher. Fitness fanatic: Inspired by old-school body building and countless hours of chopping and carrying wood in the mountains during his youth, Rocco remains a fitness enthusiast, setting himself challenges and pushing his limits.
Microsoft mitigated exposure of internal information in a storage account due to overly-permissive SAS token
Summary As part of a recent Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure (CVD) report from Wiz.io, Microsoft investigated and remediated an incident involving a Microsoft employee who shared a URL for a blob store in a public GitHub repository while contributing to open-source AI learning models. This URL included an overly-permissive Shared Access Signature (SAS) token for an internal storage account.
Results of Major Technical Investigations for Storm-0558 Key Acquisition
On July 11, 2023, Microsoft published a blog post which details how the China-Based threat actor, Storm-0558, used an acquired Microsoft account (MSA) consumer key to forge tokens to access OWA and Outlook.com. Upon identifying that the threat actor had acquired the consumer key, Microsoft performed a comprehensive technical investigation into the acquisition of the Microsoft account consumer signing key, including how it was used to access enterprise email.
Azure Serial Console Attack and Defense - Part 1
Ever had a virtual machine crash? Azure Serial console is a great way to directly connect to your Virtual machine and debug what went wrong. Azure Serial Console is a feature that’s available for free for everyone. While the primary intent of this feature is to assist users debug their machine, there are several interesting ways to abuse the features and compromise sensitive information.
Congratulations to the MSRC 2023 Most Valuable Security Researchers!
The Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program offers public thanks and recognition to security researchers who help protect our customers through discovering and sharing security vulnerabilities under Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure. Today, we are excited to recognize this year’s top 100 Most Valuable Researchers (MVRs) based on the total number of points earned for each valid report.
Updating our Vulnerability Severity Classification for AI Systems
The Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) is always looking for ways to provide clarity and transparency around how we assess the impact of vulnerabilities reported in our products and services. To this end, we are announcing the Microsoft Vulnerability Severity Classification for AI Systems, an update to Microsoft’s existing vulnerability severity classification (i.
Microsoft Bug Bounty Program Year in Review: $13.8M in Rewards
We are thrilled to share the results of our collaboration with over 345 security researchers from +45 countries around the world in the past 12 months. Together, we have discovered and fixed more than a thousand potential security issues before they impacted our customers. In recognition of this valuable collaboration, we have awarded $13.
Microsoft mitigates Power Platform Custom Code information disclosure vulnerability
Summary On 30 March 2023, Tenable informed Microsoft under Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure (CVD) of a security issue concerning Power Platform Custom Connectors using Custom Code. This feature allows customers to write code for custom connectors. This issue has been fully addressed for all customers and no customer remediation action is required.
BlueHat October 2023 Call for Papers is Now Open!
As you may have seen on social media, the next BlueHat conference will be October 11 – 12, 2023, on Microsoft’s Redmond campus in Washington state, USA. The Call for Papers (CFP) is now open through August 18, 2023. The BlueHat community is a unique blend of security researchers and responders from both inside and outside of Microsoft, who come together as peers to exchange ideas, experiences, and learnings in the interest of creating a safer and more secure world for all.
Updated Researcher Portal Submission Form: Discover the New Fields in the Submission Form
Summary: We are excited to announce the release of the updated Researcher Portal submission form. These new fields allow Security Researchers to provide additional context for the reported security issue, providing product teams with more data for analysis, gain insights and identify trends across multiple reported security vulnerabilities. The additional fields are not mandatory fields to submit a report.
From Bounty Leaderboards to Microsoft Security Researcher, Meet Cameron Vincent!
Fun Facts: Game you binged: Guitar Hero and Rock Band fanatic. Go to snack: Nutri-Grain Bars. Favorite Drink: Soda – Coca Cola specifically. Favorite Place: Singapore – stayed an extra week after a hacking collaboration and truly fell in love and hopes to get back as soon as possible. Favorite Movie/Genre: Parasite – Korean Cinema, had been watching Koren Cinema before it became a thing.
What to Expect When Reporting Vulnerabilities to Microsoft
At the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC), our mission is to protect our customers, communities, and Microsoft from current and emerging threats to security and privacy. One of the ways we do this is by working with security researchers to discover security vulnerabilities in our services and products, and then making sure those that pose a threat to customers get fixed.
Congratulations to the Top MSRC 2023 Q2 Security Researchers!
Congratulations to all the researchers recognized in this quarter’s Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program leaderboard! Thank you to everyone for your hard work and continued partnership to secure customers. The top three researchers of the 2023 Q2 Security Researcher Leaderboard are: Yuki Chen, HAO LI, wkai! Check out the full list of researchers recognized this quarter here.
Microsoft mitigates China-based threat actor Storm-0558 targeting of customer email
UPDATE: Microsoft performed a comprehensive technical investigation into the acquisition of the Microsoft account consumer signing key, including how it was used to access enterprise email. Our technical investigation has concluded, and on September 6, 2023, we published our investigation findings. Microsoft has released threat analysis on Storm-0558 activity here. Microsoft additionally released additional defense-in-depth security fixes to help customers improve token validation in their custom applications.
Breaking Barriers: Aditi’s Journey Through Sight Loss to Microsoft AI Innovator
Facts about Aditi Shah: Tools she uses: Aditi’s main tool is JAWS, a screen reader from Freedom Scientific, which she touts as the best in the market. This tool has made her digital life more manageable, enabling her to perform almost any task independently. Aditi also uses Seeing AI, a Microsoft app that she uses for important life tasks, like reading her mail, providing descriptions of different products, identifying colors for her outfits, and more.
Potential Risk of Privilege Escalation in Azure AD Applications
Summary Microsoft has developed mitigations for an insecure anti-pattern used in Azure AD (AAD) applications highlighted by Descope, and reported to Microsoft, where use of the email claim from access tokens for authorization can lead to an escalation of privilege. An attacker can falsify the email claim in tokens issued to applications.
Microsoft Response to Layer 7 Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) Attacks
Summary Beginning in early June 2023, Microsoft identified surges in traffic against some services that temporarily impacted availability. Microsoft promptly opened an investigation and subsequently began tracking ongoing DDoS activity by the threat actor that Microsoft tracks as Storm-1359. These attacks likely rely on access to multiple virtual private servers (VPS) in conjunction with rented cloud infrastructure, open proxies, and DDoS tools.
Microsoft mitigates set of cross-site scripting (XSS) vulnerabilities in Azure Bastion and Azure Container Registry
Summary Microsoft recently mitigated a set of cross-site scripting vulnerabilities affecting Azure Bastion and Azure Container Registry (ACR). Exploitation of these vulnerabilities could have potentially allowed for an unauthorized user to gain access to a target user’s session within the compromised Azure service, and subsequently lead to data tampering or resource modification.
Hey Yara, find some vulnerabilities
Intro Finding vulnerabilities in software is no easy task by itself. Doing this at cloud scale is very challenging to perform manually, and we use tools to help us identify patterns or vulnerability signatures. Yara is one of those tools. Yara is a very popular tool with Blue teams, malware researchers, and for good reason.
Announcing The BlueHat Podcast: Listen and Subscribe Now!
Available today on all major podcast platforms is The BlueHat Podcast, a new series of security research focused conversations, continuing the themes from the BlueHat 2023 conference (session recordings available to watch here). Since 2005, BlueHat has been where the security research community, and Microsoft, come together as peers: to debate, discuss, share, challenge, celebrate and learn.
Guidance related to Secure Boot Manager changes associated with CVE-2023-24932
Summary Today, Microsoft is releasing CVE-2023-24932, and associated configuration guidance, to address a Secure Boot bypass vulnerability used by the BlackLotus bootkit to exploit CVE-2022-21894. Customers will need to closely follow the configuration guidance to fully protect against this vulnerability. This vulnerability allows an attacker to execute self-signed code at the Unified Extensible Firmware Interface (UEFI) level while Secure Boot is enabled.
Microsoft Vulnerability Severity Classification for Online Services Publication
The Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) is always looking for ways to provide clarity and transparency around how we assess the impact of vulnerabilities reported in our products and services. We have published a new Microsoft Vulnerability Severity Classification for Online Services to provide additional information about our approach to online services and web applications.
Congratulations to the Top MSRC 2023 Q1 Security Researchers!
Congratulations to all the researchers recognized in this quarter’s Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program leaderboard! Thank you to everyone for your hard work and continued partnership to secure customers. The top three researchers of the 2023 Q1 Security Researcher Leaderboard are: Kai Lu (@K3vinLuSec), Yuki Chen, and wh1tc & Edwardzpeng! Check out the full list of researchers recognized this quarter here.
Best practices regarding Azure Storage Keys, Azure Functions, and Azure Role Based Access
Summary Azure provides developers and security operations staff a wide array of configurable security options to meet organizational needs. Throughout the software development lifecycle, it is important for customers to understand the shared responsibility model, as well as be familiar with various security best practices. This is particularly important in deploying Azure Functions and in provisioning Azure Role Based Access Control as customers are responsible for configuring and managing applications, identity, and data.
Guidance on Potential Misconfiguration of Authorization of Multi-Tenant Applications that use Azure AD
Summary Microsoft has addressed an authorization misconfiguration for multi-tenant applications that use Azure AD, initially discovered by Wiz, and reported to Microsoft, that impacted a small number of our internal applications. The misconfiguration allowed external parties read and write access to the impacted applications. Microsoft immediately corrected the misconfiguration and added additional authorization checks to address the issue and confirmed that no unintended access had occurred.
Microsoft Mitigates Outlook Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability
May 9, 2023 update: Releases for Microsoft Products has been updated with the release of CVE-2023-29324 - Security Update Guide - Microsoft - Windows MSHTML Platform Security Feature Bypass Vulnerability March 24, 2023 update: Impact Assessment has been updated to a link to Guidance for investigating attacks using CVE-2023-23397 - Microsoft Security Blog.
Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) Threat Hunting
As more businesses shift away from running workloads on dedicated virtual machines to running them inside containers using workload orchestrators like Kubernetes, adversaries have become more interested in them as targets. Moreover, the benefits Kubernetes provides for managing workloads are also extended to adversaries. As adversaries leverage Kubernetes to run their workloads, their understanding of how these platforms work and can be exploited increases.
Configuring host-level audit logging for AKS VMSS
This blog post runs you through how to enable and configure Linux audit logging on your Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) Virtual Machine Scale Set (VMSS) using the Linux auditing subsystem, also known as auditd. Warning The information provided below is accurate as of the release date of this blog post (2023-03) and guidance may change in future.
First steps in CHERIoT Security Research
At Microsoft, we invest a lot of time researching and investigating possibilities in our journey to memory safety. Because the massive majority of existing codebases are written in unsafe programming languages, the task of protecting legacy code is very important. Hardware solutions are an attractive approach because they introduce very powerful security properties with low overheads compared to purely software solutions.
New MSRC Blog Site
We are excited to announce the release of the new Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) blog site. Please visit msrc.microsoft.com/blog/ starting February 9th, 2023, for all past and future MSRC blog content. In addition to the new URL, we have refreshed the site with a new look and improved site performance, search, categories, and tags to help users easily find content.
BlueHat 2023: Connecting the security research community with Microsoft
We’re excited to welcome more than 400 members of the security research community from around the world to Redmond, Washington for BlueHat 2023. Hosted by the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC), BlueHat is where the security research community, and Microsoft security professionals, come together as peers to connect, share, learn, and exchange ideas in the interest of creating a safer and more secure world for all.
Microsoft Investigation - Threat actor consent phishing campaign abusing the verified publisher process
Summary On December 15th, 2022, Microsoft became aware of a consent phishing campaign involving threat actors fraudulently impersonating legitimate companies when enrolling in the Microsoft Cloud Partner Program (MCPP) (formerly known as Microsoft Partner Network (MPN)). The actor used fraudulent partner accounts to add a verified publisher to OAuth app registrations they created in Azure AD.
Congratulations to the Top MSRC 2022 Q4 Security Researchers!
Congratulations to all the researchers recognized in this quarter’s Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program leaderboard! Thank you to everyone for your hard work and continued partnership to secure customers. The top three researchers of the 2022 Q4 Security Researcher Leaderboard are: goodbyeselene, Jarvis_1oop, and kap0k! Check out the full list of researchers recognized this quarter here.
Microsoft resolves four SSRF vulnerabilities in Azure cloud services
Summary Microsoft recently fixed a set of Server-Side Request Forgery (SSRF) vulnerabilities in four Azure services (Azure API Management, Azure Functions, Azure Machine Learning, and Azure Digital Twins) reported by Orca Security. These SSRF vulnerabilities were determined to be low risk as they do not allow access to sensitive information or Azure backend services.
Publishing CBL-Mariner CVEs on the Security Update Guide CVRF API
Microsoft is pleased to announce that beginning January 11, 2023, we will publish CBL-Mariner CVEs in the Security Update Guide (SUG) Common Vulnerability Reporting Framework (CVRF) API. CBL-Mariner is a Linux distribution built by Microsoft to power Azure’s cloud and edge products and services and is currently in preview as an AKS Container Host.
Security Update Guide Improvement – Representing Hotpatch Updates
Today we are updating the way Microsoft Security Update Guide (SUG) represents the Windows Hotpatch feature to make it easier for users to identify the hotpatch and security updates. Hotpatching was introduced a year ago as a new way to install updates on supported Windows Server Azure Edition virtual machines (VMs) without requiring a reboot after installation.
BlueHat 2023: Applications to Attend NOW OPEN!
We are excited to announce that applications to attend BlueHat 2023 are now open BlueHat 2023 will be the 20th version of the BlueHat conference and will once again be on the Microsoft campus in Redmond, WA, USA, from February 8 – 9, 2023. Hosted by the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC), BlueHat is where the security research community, and Microsoft security professionals, come together as peers, to connect, share, and learn.
A Ride on the Wild Side with Hacking Heavyweight Sick Codes
Beverage of Choice: Krating Daeng (Thai Red Bull) Industry Influencer he Admires: Casey John Ellis What did you want to be when you grew up? A physician and nearly did Hobbies (Present & Past): Motorcycling & Australian Football Bucket List: Continuing to discover new software Fun Fact: He currently has 2,000 tabs open
Announcing the Microsoft Machine Learning Membership Inference Competition (MICO)
We’re excited to announce the launch of a new competition focusing on the security and privacy of machine learning (ML) systems. Machine learning has already become a key enabler in many products and services, and this trend is likely to continue. It is therefore critical to understand the security and privacy guarantees provided by state-of-the-art ML algorithms – indeed this is one of Microsoft’s Responsible AI Principles.
Awareness and guidance related to OpenSSL 3.0 - 3.0.6 risk (CVE-2022-3786 and CVE-2202-3602)
Summary Microsoft is aware and actively addressing the impact associated with the recent OpenSSL vulnerabilities announced on October 25th 2022, fixed in version 3.0.7. As part of our standard processes, we are rolling out fixes for impacted services. Any customer action that is required will be highlighted in this blog and our associated Security Update Guides (CVE-2022-3786 Security Update Guide and CVE-2022-3602 Security Update Guide).
Microsoft Mitigates Vulnerability in Jupyter Notebooks for Azure Cosmos DB
Summary Microsoft recently fixed an authentication bypass vulnerability in Jupyter Notebooks for Azure Cosmos DB (currently in preview) reported by Orca Security. Customers not using Jupyter Notebooks (99.8% of Azure Cosmos DB customers do NOT use Jupyter notebooks) were not susceptible to this vulnerability. The bug was introduced on August 12th and fully patched worldwide on Oct 6th, two days after it was reported.
Reflecting on Cybersecurity Awareness Month: At its Core, Cybersecurity is all about People
As Cybersecurity Awareness Month 2022 comes to a close, I’m grateful for the impact it has had in bringing cybersecurity to the forefront since it began in 2004. Though the month may be over, our work in cybersecurity is never done. Often, we think about cybersecurity as a complex technology problem, but at its core, it’s really about people: the customers and communities we work to protect and defend, the current and future cybersecurity professionals on the front lines of the fight, and the larger security community coming together to strengthen cybersecurity for all.
Congratulations to the Top MSRC 2022 Q3 Security Researchers!
Congratulations to all the researchers recognized in this quarter’s Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program leaderboard! Thank you to everyone for your hard work and continued partnership to secure customers. The top three researchers of the 2022 Q3 Security Researcher Leaderboard are: Zhiyi Zhang , Yuki Chen , and Dang The Tuyen! Check out the full list of researchers recognized this quarter here.
Awareness and guidance related to potential Service Fabric Explorer (SFX) v1 web client risk
Summary Microsoft was recently made aware of a Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) vulnerability (CVE-2022-35829), that under limited circumstances, affects older versions of Service Fabric Explorer (SFX). The current default SFX web client (SFXv2) is not vulnerable to this attack. However, customers can manually switch from the default web client (SFXv2) to an older vulnerable SFX web client version (SFXv1).
Investigation Regarding Misconfigured Microsoft Storage Location
October 28, 2022 update: Added a Customer FAQ section. Summary Security researchers at SOCRadar informed Microsoft on September 24, 2022, of a misconfigured Microsoft endpoint. This misconfiguration resulted in the potential for unauthenticated access to some business transaction data corresponding to interactions between Microsoft and prospective customers, such as the planning or potential implementation and provisioning of Microsoft services.
BlueHat 2023 Call for Papers is Now Open!
For nearly 20 years, BlueHat has been where the security research community, and Microsoft security professionals come together as peers, to share, debate, challenge, learn, and exchange ideas in the interest of creating a safer and more secure world for all. We are extremely excited to announce that BlueHat is back in-person and the 2023 Call for Papers (CFP) is now open through December 8!
Hunting for Cobalt Strike: Mining and plotting for fun and profit
Introduction Cobalt Strike is a commercial Command and Control framework built by Helpsystems. You can find out more about Cobalt Strike on the MITRE ATT&CK page. But it can also be used by real adversaries. In this post we describe how to use RiskIQ and other Microsoft technologies to see if you have Cobalt Strike payloads (also called “beacons”) in your network.
Improvements in Security Update Notifications Delivery - And a New Delivery Method
At MSRC, we are passionate about ensuring our customers have a positive experience when they use the Microsoft Security Update Guide (SUG). A big part of improving that experience is ensuring that customers have timely and easily accessible notifications. As such we have two important announcements to share about changes to the way we provide notifications.
Customer Guidance for Reported Zero-day Vulnerabilities in Microsoft Exchange Server
November 8, 2022 update - Microsoft released security updates for CVE-2022-41040 and CVE-2022-41082. We recommend that customers protect their organizations by applying the updates immediately to affected systems. The options described in the Mitigations section are no longer recommended. For more information, review the Exchange Team blog. Summary On November 8 Microsoft released security updates for two zero-day vulnerabilities affecting Microsoft Exchange Server 2013, Exchange Server 2016, and Exchange Server 2019.
Defense-in-Depth Updates for Azure Identity libraries and Azure Key Vault libraries within Azure SDK plus Best Practice Implementation Guidance
Summary Today, Microsoft released new versions of the Azure Key Vault libraries and Azure Identity libraries as part of the Azure Software Development Kit (SDK) that includes defense-in-depth feature improvements. We also published best practice guidance to help protect applications and services that allow externally controlled input into the Azure Key Vault client URI for processing.
Curious, Innovative, Creative, Community Driven: Meet Cyb3rWard0g, Roberto Rodriquez
When I grow up I want to be? Dancer or a veterinarian Happiest memories: Tearing up the dance floor at weddings and playing soccer in the streets of Lima, Peru Previous Job roles : Mopped floors for McDonalds, packed boxes at an Avon warehouse, Manager at Olive Garden, Beer taster/server and then dove into tech and security
What’s the smallest variety of CHERI?
The Portmeirion project is a collaboration between Microsoft Research Cambridge, Microsoft Security Response Center, and Azure Silicon Engineering & Solutions. Over the past year, we have been exploring how to scale the key ideas from CHERI down to tiny cores on the scale of the cheapest microcontrollers. These cores are very different from the desktop and server-class processors that have been the focus of the Morello project.
Vulnerability Fixed in Azure Synapse Spark
Summary Microsoft takes a proactive approach to continually probe our defenses, hunt for vulnerabilities, and seek new, innovative ways to protect our customers. Security researchers are an important part of this effort, and our collaborative partnership is critical in a world where cybersecurity attacks continue to grow in number and sophistication.
Microsoft Bug Bounty Programs Year in Review: $13.7M in Rewards
The Microsoft Bug Bounty Programs and partnerships with the global security research community are important parts of Microsoft’s holistic approach to defending customers against security threats. Our bounty programs incentivize security research in high-impact areas to stay ahead of the ever-changing security landscapes, emerging technology, and new threats. Security Researchers help us secure millions of customers by discovering and reporting vulnerabilities to Microsoft through Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure.
Security Update Guide Notification System News: Create your profile now
Sharing information through the Security Update Guide (SUG) is an important part of our ongoing effort to help customers manage security risks and keep systems protected. In January 2022 we introduced Phase One of a new way for customers to receive email notifications about new Microsoft product security content using any email address, not just a Microsoft account, or Live ID as it is sometimes known.
Congratulations to the MSRC 2022 Most Valuable Researchers!
The Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program offers public thanks and recognition to security researchers who help protect our customers through discovering and sharing security vulnerabilities under Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure. Today, we are excited to recognize this year’s top 100 Most Valuable Researchers (MVRs) based on the
Microsoft Office to publish symbols starting August 2022
We are excited to announce that Microsoft Office will begin publishing Office symbols for Windows via the Microsoft Public Symbol Server on August 9th 2022. The publication of Office symbols is a part of our continuing investment to improve security and performance for customers and partners. Key Advantages for customers, partners, and Microsoft Security: Empowering the security community to protect customer s
Anatomy of a Cloud-Service Security Update
Our security teams around the world focus on identifying and mitigating security issues as soon as possible while minimizing customer disruption. One of the challenges of a traditional security update is ensuring customers apply the protections promptly. We recently discussed the work that goes into these updates in The Anatomy of a Security update.
Congratulations to the Top MSRC 2022 Q2 Security Researchers!
Congratulations to all the researchers recognized in this quarter’s Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program leaderboard! Thank you to everyone for your hard work and continued partnership to secure customers. The top three researchers of the 2022 Q2 Security Researcher Leaderboard are: Yuki Chen, Zhiyi Zhang, and William Söderberg! Check out the full list of researchers recognized this quarter here.
Mitigation for Azure Storage SDK Client-Side Encryption Padding Oracle Vulnerability
Summary Google informed Microsoft under Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure (CVD) of a padding oracle vulnerability that may affect customers using Azure Storage SDK (for Python, .NET, Java) client-side encryption (CVE-2022-30187). To mitigate this vulnerability, we released a new General Availability (GA) version of the Azure Storage SDK client-side encryption feature (v2) on July 12, 2022.
All Hands-on Deck: A Whole-of-Society Approach for Cybersecurity
The morning of June 9th, I was driving over the Golden Gate Bridge into San Francisco with my family. While crossing the bridge my children shared some facts about this modern engineering marvel. Each day, approx. 100,000 vehicles travel over the bridge deck, which weighs a staggering 150,000 tons, and is suspended by 250 pairs of steel ropes.
Microsoft Mitigates Azure Site Recovery Vulnerabilities
Summary Microsoft recently mitigated a set of vulnerabilities in Azure Site Recovery (ASR) and released fixes today, July 12, as part of our regular Update Tuesday cycle. These vulnerabilities affect all ASR on-premises customers using a VMware/Physical to Azure scenario and are fixed in the latest ASR 9.49 release. We recommend customers update to the latest version of ASR at https://aka.
Service Fabric Privilege Escalation from Containerized Workloads on Linux
Under Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure (CVD), cloud-security vendor Palo Alto Networks informed Microsoft of an issue affecting Service Fabric (SF) Linux clusters (CVE-2022-30137). The vulnerability enables a bad actor, with access to a compromised container, to escalate privileges and gain control of the resource’s host SF node and the entire cluster.
A Man of Action: Meet Callum Carney
Hidden Talents : He was a competitive swimmer for many years. Instrument of Choice : His fingers were made for the keyboard, but he used to play the trumpet. 5 pieces of entertainment for the rest of his life : The Office, World War Z, The Matrix, Breaking Bad, The Thick of It.
Guidance for CVE-2022-30190 Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool Vulnerability
UPDATE July 12, 2022: As part of the response by Microsoft, a defense in depth variant has been found and fixed in the Windows July cumulative updates. Microsoft recommends installing the July updates as soon as possible. Windows Version Link to KB article LInk to Catalog Windows 8.1, Windows Server 2012 R2 5015805 Download Windows Server 2012 5015805 Download Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2 5015805 Download Windows Server 2008 SP2 5015805 Download On Monday May 30, 2022, Microsoft issued CVE-2022-30190 regarding the Microsoft Support Diagnostic Tool (MSDT) in Windows vulnerability.
New Research Paper: Pre-hijacking Attacks on Web User Accounts
In 2020, MSRC awarded two Identity Project Research Grants to support external researchers working to further strengthen the security of identity protocols and systems. Today we are pleased to release the results of the first of these projects. This research, led by independent security researcher Avinash Sudhodanan, investigated account pre-hijacking – a new class of attacks affecting websites and other online services.
Researcher Spotlight: Hector Peralta’s Evolution from Popcorn Server to the MSRC Leaderboards
“The bug bounty literally changed my life. Before this, I had nothing.” Coolest thing he purchased : His first vehicle! Best gift to give: Buying his nephew gaming accessories. Favorite Hacking Companion : His two cats. They’re always by his side when he is working late. Origin of his Hacker name : The word dog in Spanish is “perro” @p3RR0.
Anatomy of a Security Update
The Microsoft Security Response Center is part of the defender community and on the front line of security response for our customers and the company. Our mission is to protect customers and Microsoft from current and emerging threats related to security and privacy. We monitor threats and provide updated tools and guidance to help organizations defend against, identify, and remediate attacks.
Vulnerability mitigated in the third-party Data Connector used in Azure Synapse pipelines and Azure Data Factory (CVE-2022-29972)
Summary Microsoft recently mitigated a vulnerability in Azure Data Factory and Azure Synapse pipelines. The vulnerability was specific to the third-party Open Database Connectivity (ODBC) driver used to connect to Amazon Redshift in Azure Synapse pipelines and Azure Data Factory Integration Runtime (IR) and did not impact Azure Synapse as a whole.
Azure Database for PostgreSQL Flexible Server Privilege Escalation and Remote Code Execution
MSRC was informed by Wiz, a cloud security vendor, under Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure (CVD) of an issue with the Azure Database for PostgreSQL Flexible Server that could result in unauthorized cross-account database access in a region. By exploiting an elevated permissions bug in the Flexible Server authentication process for a replication user, a malicious user could leverage an improperly anchored regular expression to bypass authentication to gain access to other customers’ databases.
Congratulations and New Swag Awards for the Top MSRC 2022 Q1 Security Researchers!
Today, we are excited to recognize this quarter’s Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program leaderboard and share new swag awards and improvements to the leaderboard. Congratulations and thank you to everyone for your hard work and continued partnership to secure customers. The top three researchers of the 2022 Q1 Security Researcher Leaderboard are: Yuki Chen, William Söderberg, and Terry Zhang @pnig0s!
Expanding High Impact Scenario Awards for Microsoft Bug Bounty Programs
We are excited to announce the addition of scenario-based bounty awards to the Dynamics 365 and Power Platform Bounty Program and M365 Bounty Program. Through these new scenario-based bounty awards, we encourage researchers to focus their research on vulnerabilities that have the highest potential impact on customer privacy and security. Awards increase by up to 30% ($26,000 USD total) for eligible scenario submissions.
Microsoft’s Response to CVE-2022-22965 Spring Framework
Summary Microsoft used the Spring Framework RCE, Early Announcement to inform analysis of the remote code execution vulnerability, CVE-2022-22965, disclosed on 31 Mar 2022. We have not to date noted any impact to the security of our enterprise services and have not experienced any degraded service availability due to this vulnerability.
On-Premises Servers Products are Here! Introducing the Applications and On-Premises Servers Bug Bounty Program
Microsoft is excited to announce the addition of Exchange on-premises, SharePoint on-premises, and Skype for Business on-premises to the Applications and On-Premises Servers Bounty Program. Through this expanded program, we encourage researchers to discover and report high-impact security vulnerabilities to help protect customers. We offer awards up to $26,000 USD for eligible submissions.
Randomizing the KUSER_SHARED_DATA Structure on Windows
Windows 10 made a lot of improvements in Kernel Address Space Layout Randomization (KASLR) that increases the cost of exploitation, particularly for remote code execution exploits. Many kernel virtual address space (VAS) locations including kernel stacks, pools, system PTEs etc. are randomized. A well-known exception to this is the KUSER_SHARED_DATA structure which is a page of memory that has always been traditionally mapped at a fixed virtual address in the kernel.
Increasing Representation of Women in Security Research
Microsoft is committed to partnering with and supporting women in security research. Whether it’s growing women early in their career, or connecting people with mentors, we want to be a part of the journey. Throughout Women’s History Month we intentionally sought opportunities to engage with women in security research. Whether at an intimate gathering of some of the most respected women in security research or engaging with women early in their career, it became obvious there just aren’t enough women in security research.
Randomizing the KUSER_SHARED_DATA Structure on Windows
Opps, this post exists, but was actually published 4/5/2022. We’re navigating you to the correct page now. If that doesn’t work click the link below: Randomizing the KUSER_SHARED_DATA Structure on Windows – Microsoft Security Response Center
Exploring a New Class of Kernel Exploit Primitive
The security landscape is dynamic, changing often and as a result, attack surfaces evolve. MSRC receives a wide variety of cases spanning different products, bug types and exploit primitives. One particularly interesting primitive we see is an arbitrary kernel pointer read. These often happen when kernel mode code does not validate that pointers read from attacker-controlled input actually point to the user-mode portion of the Virtual Address Space (VAS).
Guidance for CVE-2022-23278 spoofing in Microsoft Defender for Endpoint
Microsoft released a security update to address CVE-2022-23278 in Microsoft Defender for Endpoint. This important class spoofing vulnerability impacts all platforms. We wish to thank Falcon Force for the collaboration on addressing this issue through coordinated vulnerability disclosure. Cybercriminals are looking for any opening to tamper with security protections in order to blind, confuse, or often shut off customer defenses.
Disclosure of Vulnerability in Azure Automation Managed Identity Tokens
On December 10, 2021, Microsoft mitigated a vulnerability in the Azure Automation service. Azure Automation accounts that used Managed Identitiestokens for authorization and an Azure Sandbox for job runtime and execution were exposed. Microsoft has not detected evidence of misuse of tokens. Microsoft has notified customers with affected Automation accounts. Microsoft recommends following the security best practices herefor the Azure Automation service
Cyber threat activity in Ukraine: analysis and resources
UPDATE 27 Apr 2022: See Updated malware details and Microsoft security product detections below as discussed in the Special Report: Ukraine. UPDATE 02 MAR 2022: See Updated malware details and Microsoft security product detections below for additional insights and protections specific to the evolving threats we have identified impacting organizations with ties to Ukraine.
Researcher Spotlight: Cyber Viking Nate Warfield is Here to Help
“There are few jobs where I can say, I make two billion people more secure on the internet every single day.” Childhood Look: Goth kid, all in black Current Look: Cyber Viking Childhood hobby: Head banging to Metallica, Marilyn Manson, and Guns N’ Roses Current hobby: n0x08 DJ’s Live events around the world.
Congratulations to the Top MSRC 2021 Q4 Security Researchers!
Congratulations to all the researchers recognized in this quarter’s Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program leaderboard! Thank you to everyone for your hard work and continued partnership to secure customers. The top three researchers of the 2021 Q4 Security Researcher Leaderboard are: rezer0dai (780 points) , Callum Carney (750 points) , and wtm (615 points) !
Expanding the Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program
The Microsoft Researcher Recognition Program offers public thanks and recognition to security researchers who help protect our customers through discovering and sharing security vulnerabilities under Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure. Today, we are expanding the program to recognize more security researchers in more ways for their contributions to protecting customers, and we published the first new leaderboard on our program page.
An Armful of CHERIs
Today, Arm announced that the first silicon supporting the Morello prototype architecture, a research project led by Arm, Microsoft, University of Cambridge and others, is now available on a limited run of demonstration boards, which are being shipped from today to industry partners for testing. Morello is the first high-performance implementation of the CHERI extensions.
Coming Soon: New Security Update Guide Notification System
Sharing information through the Security Update Guide is an important part of our ongoing effort to help customers manage security risks and keep systems protected. Based on your feedback we have been working to make signing up for and receiving Security Update Guide notifications easier. We are excited to share that starting today, you can sign up with any email address that you want and receive notifications at that email address.
Azure App Service Linux source repository exposure
MSRC was informed by Wiz.io, a cloud security vendor, under Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure (CVD) of an issue where customers can unintentionally configure the .git folder to be created in the content root, which would put them at risk for information disclosure. This, when combined with an application configured to serve static content, makes it possible for others to download files not intended to be public.
Researcher Spotlight: Dr. Nestori Syynimaa’s Constant Mission Protecting Identities
“When you find the things I find, they really matter. They affect everybody’s security.” Currently streaming : The Expanse and Lost in Space on Netflix Currently listening to : Amorphis, Architects, and Killswitch Engage Currently running : 130 kilometers (or ~80 miles) a month Currently playing : Floorball (a type of floor hockey with five players and a goalkeeper)
Microsoft’s Response to CVE-2021-44228 Apache Log4j 2
Published on: 2021 Dec 11, updated 2022 Apr 6. SUMMARY Microsoft continues our analysis of the remote code execution vulnerabilities related to Apache Log4j (a logging tool used in many Java-based applications) disclosed on 9 Dec 2021. Currently, Microsoft is not aware of any impact, outside of the initial disclosure involving Minecraft: Java Edition, to the security of our enterprise services and has not experienced any degradation in availability of those services as a result of this vulnerability.
Guidance for Azure Active Directory (AD) keyCredential property Information Disclosure in Application and Service Principal APIs
Microsoft recently mitigated an information disclosure issue, CVE-2021-42306, to prevent private key data from being stored by some Azure services in the keyCredentialsproperty of an Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) Applicationand/or Service Principal, and prevent reading of private key data previously stored in the keyCredentials property. The keyCredentials property is used to configure an application’s authentication credentials.
BlueHat is Back!
After a short hiatus, BlueHat is coming back with a vengeance! And we’ve got big plans for the entire researcher community. But first, I must apologize. It’s been a while since you have heard from us. We didn’t have BlueHat 2020 or 2021, and we know that was disappointing. It was partly due to the pandemic, where our priority was simply keeping everyone safe.
We’re Excited to Announce the Launch of Comms Hub!
We are excited to announce the launch of Comms Hub to the Researcher Portal submission experience! With this launch, security researchers will be able to streamline communication with MSRC case SPMs (case managers), attach additional files, track case and bug bounty status all in the Researcher Portal. Summary – What is Comms Hub?
New High Impact Scenarios and Awards for the Azure Bounty Program
Microsoft is excited to announce new Azure Bounty Program awards up to $60,000 to encourage and reward vulnerability research focused on the highest potential impact to customer security. These increased awards are a part of our ongoing investment in partnership with the security research community, and an important part of Microsoft’s holistic approach to defending against security threats.
Congratulations to the Top MSRC 2021 Q3 Security Researchers!
Congratulations to all the researchers recognized in this quarter’s MSRC Researcher Recognition Program leaderboard! Thank you to everyone for your hard work and continued partnership to secure customers. The top three researchers of the 2021 Q3 Security Researcher Leaderboard are: BugHunter010 (840
Power Platform is Here! Introducing the Dynamics 365 and Power Platform Bug Bounty Program
Microsoft is excited to announce the addition of Power Platform to the newly rebranded Dynamics 365 and Power Platform Bounty Program. Through this expanded program, we encourage researchers to discover and report high impact security vulnerabilities they may find in the new Power Platform scope to help protect customers. We offer awards up to $20,000 USD for eligible submissions.
Additional Guidance Regarding OMI Vulnerabilities within Azure VM Management Extensions
Last updated on October 5, 2021: See revision history located at the end of the post for changes. On September 14, 2021, Microsoft released fixes for three Elevation of Privilege (EoP) vulnerabilities and one unauthenticated Remote Code Execution (RCE) vulnerability in the Open Management Infrastructure (OMI) framework: CVE-2021-38645, CVE-2021-38649, CVE-2021-38648, and CVE-2021-38647, respectively.
Coordinated disclosure of vulnerability in Azure Container Instances Service
Microsoft recently mitigated a vulnerability reported by a security researcher in the Azure Container Instances (ACI) that could potentially allow a user to access other customers’ information in the ACI service. Our investigation surfaced no unauthorized access to customer data. Out of an abundance of caution we notified customers with containers running on the same clusters as the researchers via Service Health Notifications in the Azure Portal.
Update on the vulnerability in the Azure Cosmos DB Jupyter Notebook Feature
On August 12, 2021, a security researcher reported a vulnerability in the Azure Cosmos DB Jupyter Notebook feature that could potentially allow a user to gain access to another customer’s resources by using the account’s primary read-write key. We mitigated the vulnerability immediately. Our investigation indicates that no customer data was accessed because of this vulnerability by third parties or security researchers.
Announcing the Launch of the Azure SSRF Security Research Challenge
Microsoft is excited to announce the launch of a new, three-month security research challenge under the Azure Security Lab initiative. The Azure Server-Side Request Forgery (SSRF) Research Challenge invites security researchers to discover and share high impact SSRF vulnerabilities in Microsoft Azure. Qualified submissions are eligible for bounty rewards up to $60,000 USD, with additional awards for identifying innovative or novel attack patterns.
Point and Print Default Behavior Change
Our investigation into several vulnerabilities collectively referred to as “PrintNightmare” has determined that the default behavior of Point and Print does not provide customers with the level of security required to protect against potential attacks. Today, we are addressing this risk by changing the default Point and Print driver installation and update behavior to require administrator privileges.
Congratulations to the MSRC 2021 Most Valuable Security Researchers!
The MSRC Researcher Recognition Program offers public thanks and acknowledgement to the researchers who help protect customers through discovering and sharing security vulnerabilities under Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure. Today, we are excited to recognize this year’s Most Valuable Security Researchers (MVRs) based on the impact, accuracy,
Introducing Bounty Awards for Teams Mobile Applications Security Research
We are pleased to announce the addition of Microsoft Teams mobile applications to the Microsoft Applications Bounty Program. Through the expanded program we welcome researchers from across the globe to seek out and disclose any high impact security vulnerabilities they may find in Teams mobile applications to help secure customers. Rewards up to $30,000 USD are available for eligible submissions.
Announcing the Top MSRC 2021 Q2 Security Researchers - Congratulations!
We’re excited to announce the top contributing researchers for the 2021 Second Quarter (Q2)! Congratulations to all the researchers recognized in this quarter’s leaderboard and thank you to everyone who continues to help secure our customers and the
Clarified Guidance for CVE-2021-34527 Windows Print Spooler Vulnerability
On Tuesday July 6, 2021, Microsoft issued CVE-2021-34527 regarding a Windows Print Spooler vulnerability. Updates were released on July 6 and 7 which addressed the vulnerability for all supported Windows versions. We encourage customers to update as soon as possible. CVE-2021-34527 - Windows Print Spooler Remote Code Execution Vulnerability. Following the out of band release (OOB) we investigated claims regarding the effectiveness of the security update and questions around the suggested mitigations.
Microsoft Bug Bounty Programs Year in Review: $13.6M in Rewards
Partnering with the security research community is an important part of Microsoft’s holistic approach to defending against security threats. Bug bounty programs are one part of this partnership. By discovering and reporting vulnerabilities to Microsoft through Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure (CVD), researchers continue to help us secure millions of customers. Over the past 12 months, Microsoft awarded $13.
Out-of-Band (OOB) Security Update available for CVE-2021-34527
Today Microsoft released an Out-of-Band (OOB) security update for CVE-2021-34527, which is being discussed externally as PrintNightmare. This is a cumulative update release, so it contains all previous security fixes and should be applied immediately to fully protect your systems. The fix that we released today fully addresses the public vulnerability, and it also includes a new feature that allows customers to implement stronger protections.
Investigating and Mitigating Malicious Drivers
The security landscape continues to rapidly evolve as threat actors find new and innovative methods to gain access to environments across a wide range of vectors. As the industry moves closer to the adoption of a Zero Trust security posture with broad and layered defenses, we remain committed to sharing threat intelligence with the community to shine a light on the latest techniques and exploits of attackers so the industry can better protect itself.
New Nobelium activity
The Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center is tracking new activity from the NOBELIUM threat actor. Our investigation into the methods and tactics being used continues, but we have seen password spray and brute-force attacks and want to share some details to help our customers and communities protect themselves. This recent activity was mostly unsuccessful, and the majority of targets were not successfully compromised - we are aware of three compromised entities to date.
“BadAlloc” – Memory allocation vulnerabilities could affect wide range of IoT and OT devices in industrial, medical, and enterprise networks
Microsoft’s Section 52, the Azure Defender for IoT security research group, recently uncovered a series of critical memory allocation vulnerabilities in IoT and OT devices that adversaries could exploit to bypass security controls in order to execute malicious code or cause a system crash. These remote code execution (RCE) vulnerabilities cover more than 25 CVEs and potentially affect a wide range of domains, from consumer and medical IoT to Industrial IoT, Operational Technology (OT), and industrial control systems.
Congratulating Our Top MSRC 2021 Q1 Security Researchers!
We’re excited to announce the top contributing researchers for the 2021 First Quarter (Q1)! Congratulations to all the researchers recognized in this quarter’s leaderboard and thank you to everyone who continues to help secure our customers and the
April 2021 Update Tuesday packages now available
Update August 25, 2021: Microsoft strongly recommends that you update your servers with the most recent security updates available. CVE-2021-34473 (ProxyShell) CVE-2021-34523 (ProxyShell) CVE-2021-33766 Today is Update Tuesday – our commitment to provide a predictable monthly schedule to release updates and provide the latest protection to our customers. Update Tuesday is a monthly cycle when Microsoft releases patches for vulnerabilities that we have found proactively or that have been disclosed to us through our security partnerships under a coordinated vulnerability disclosure.
Introducing Bounty Awards for Teams Desktop Client Security Research
Partnering with the security research community is an important part of Microsoft’s holistic approach to defending against security threats. As much of the world has shifted to working from home in the last year, Microsoft Teams has enabled people to stay connected, organized, and collaborate remotely. Microsoft and security researchers across the planet continue to partner to help secure customers and the technologies we use for remote collaboration.
Guidance for responders: Investigating and remediating on-premises Exchange Server vulnerabilities
This guidance will help customers address threats taking advantage of the recently disclosed Microsoft Exchange Server on-premises vulnerabilities CVE-2021-26855, CVE-2021-26858, CVE-2021-26857, and CVE-2021-27065, which are being exploited. We strongly urge customers to immediately update systems. Failing to address these vulnerabilities can result in compromise of your on-premises Exchange Server and, potentially, other parts of your internal network.
One-Click Microsoft Exchange On-Premises Mitigation Tool - March 2021
We have been actively working with customers through our customer support teams, third-party hosters, and partner network to help them secure their environments and respond to associated threats from the recent Exchange Server on-premises attacks. Based on these engagements we realized that there was a need for a simple, easy to use, automated solution that would meet the needs of customers using both current and out-of-support versions of on-premises Exchange Server.
Microsoft Exchange Server Vulnerabilities Mitigations - updated March 15, 2021
Update March 15, 2021: If you have not yet patched, and have not applied the mitigations referenced below, a one-click tool, the Exchange On-premises Mitigation Tool is now our recommended path to mitigate until you can patch. Microsoft previously blogged our strong recommendation that customers upgrade their on-premises Exchange environments to the latest supported version.
A new experience for reporting copyright or trademark infringement on Microsoft Services
The Notice of Copyright or Trademark Infringement Portal has helped protect Microsoft’s users and customers from intellectual property infringement across online services like Microsoft Azure, Office, Outlook, Skype, Stream, Microsoft News, Sway, Hotmail, NuGet, and Yammer. Microsoft’s response to claims of intellectual property infringement is driven by the reports you send us.
On-Premises Exchange Server Vulnerabilities Resource Center - updated March 25, 2021
On March 2nd, we released several security updates for Microsoft Exchange Server to address vulnerabilities that are being used in ongoing attacks. Due to the critical nature of these vulnerabilities, we recommend that customers protect their organizations by applying the patches immediately to affected systems. The vulnerabilities affect Exchange Server versions 2013, 2016, and 2019, while Exchange Server 2010 is also being updated for defense-in-depth purposes.
Microsoft Internal Solorigate Investigation - Final Update
We believe the Solorigate incident is an opportunity to work with the community, to share information, strengthen defenses and respond to attacks. We have now completed our internal investigation into the activity of the actor and want to share our findings, which confirm that we found no evidence of access to production services or customer data.
MSRC Security Researcher Recognition: 2021
Wondering how to get into the 2021 MSRC Most Valuable Security Researcher list and get recognized during the Black Hat USA this August? Read on to learn more about the different paths you can take to get into the top researcher tiers. The MSRC Most Valuable Security Researcher (MVR) and MSRC Contributor are tiers in the Researcher Recognition Program which annually recognize researchers for impactful contributions, considering report impact, accuracy and volume.
Continuing to Listen: Good News about the Security Update Guide API!
Based on user feedback we have simplified programmatic access to the security update data by removing the authentication and API-Key requirements when using the CVRF API. You will no longer have to log in to obtain a personal API key to access the data. We’re happy to make this valuable public information more freely available and accessible.
Multiple Security Updates Affecting TCP/IP:  CVE-2021-24074, CVE-2021-24094, and CVE-2021-24086
Today Microsoft released a set of fixes affecting Windows TCP/IP implementation that include two Critical Remote Code Execution (RCE) vulnerabilities (CVE-2021-24074, CVE-2021-24094) and an Important Denial of Service (DoS) vulnerability (CVE-2021-24086). The two RCE vulnerabilities are complex which make it difficult to create functional exploits, so they are not likely in the short term.
New and Improved Report Abuse Portal and API!
The Report Abuse (CERT) Portal and Report Abuse API have played a significant role in MSRC’s response to suspected cyberattacks, privacy issues, and abuse originating from Microsoft Online Services. With the contributions from our wonderful community of reporters, we continue to gain insightful perspectives into the various types of attacks that threaten our online services, our cloud, and our customers.
Netlogon Domain Controller Enforcement Mode is enabled by default beginning with the February 9, 2021 Security Update, related to CVE-2020-1472
Microsoft addressed a Critical RCE vulnerability affecting the Netlogon protocol (CVE-2020-1472) on August 11, 2020. We are reminding our customers that beginning with the February 9, 2021 Security Update release we will be enabling Domain Controller enforcement mode by default. This will block vulnerable connections from non-compliant devices. DC enforcement mode requires that all Windows and non-Windows devices use secure RPC with Netlogon secure channel unless customers have explicitly allowed the account to be vulnerable by adding an exception for the non-compliant device.
Top MSRC 2020 Q4 Security Researchers – Congratulations!
We’re excited to announce the top contributing researchers for the 2020 Fourth Quarter (Q4)! Congratulations to all of the researchers who made this quarter’s leaderboard and a huge thank you to everyone who continues to help secure our customers and the ecosystem. The top three researchers of the 2020 Q4 Security Researcher Leaderboard are: Cameron Vincent (2065 points) , Yuki Chen (1535 points) , and Suresh C (862 points).
Security Update Guide Supports CVEs Assigned by Industry Partners
Hi Folks, This month we are introducing a new data element for each CVE in the Security Update Guide, called Assigning CNA. First let me back up a bit and give some information about the CVE program. The purpose of a CVE is to uniquely identify a cybersecurity vulnerability. The CVE program was started back in 1999 and is funded by the US federal government, currently out of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA).
Building Faster AMD64 Memset Routines
Over the past several years, Microsoft has rolled out several changes that result in more memory being zeroed. These mitigations include: The InitAll mitigation which zeros most stack variables Switching most Microsoft kernel code over to the ExAllocatePool2/ExAllocatePool3 API’s which zero memory by default. Where possible the compiler will unroll calls to memset.
Microsoft Internal Solorigate Investigation Update
As we said in our recent blog, we believe the Solorigate incident is an opportunity to work together in important ways, to share information, strengthen defenses and respond to attacks. Like other SolarWinds customers, we have been actively looking for indicators of the Solorigate actor and want to share an update from our ongoing internal investigation.
Nobelium Resource Center - updated March 4, 2021
UPDATE: Microsoft continues to work with partners and customers to expand our knowledge of the threat actor behind the nation-state cyberattacks that compromised the supply chain of SolarWinds and impacted multiple other organizations. Microsoft previously used ‘Solorigate’ as the primary designation for the actor, but moving forward, we want to place appropriate focus on the actors behind the sophisticated attacks, rather than one of the examples of malware used by the actors.
Customer Guidance on Recent Nation-State Cyber Attacks
Note: we are updating as the investigation continues. Revision history listed at the bottom. This post contains technical details about the methods of the actor we believe was involved in Recent Nation-State Cyber Attacks, with the goal to enable the broader security community to hunt for activity in their networks and contribute to a shared defense against this sophisticated threat actor.
Security Update Guide: Let's keep the conversation going
Hi Folks, We want to continue to highlight changes we’ve made to our Security Update Guide. We have received a lot of feedback, much of which has been very positive. We acknowledge there have been some stability problems and we are actively working through reports of older browsers not being able to run the new application.
Vulnerability Descriptions in the New Version of the Security Update Guide
With the launch of the new version of the Security Update Guide, Microsoft is demonstrating its commitment to industry standards by describing the vulnerabilities with the Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS). This is a precise method that describes the vulnerability with attributes such as the attack vector, the complexity of the attack, whether an adversary needs certain privileges, etc.
Attacks exploiting Netlogon vulnerability (CVE-2020-1472)
Microsoft has received a small number of reports from customers and others about continued activity exploiting a vulnerability affecting the Netlogon protocol (CVE-2020-1472) which was previously addressed in security updates starting on August 11, 2020. If the original guidance is not applied, the vulnerability could allow an attacker to spoof a domain controller account that could be used to steal domain credentials and take over the domain.
Announcing the Top MSRC 2020 Q3 Security Researchers
Following the MSRC’s 2020 Most Valuable Security Researchers announced during this year’s Black Hat, we’re excited to announce the top contributing researchers for the 2020 Third Quarter (Q3)! The top three researchers of the 2020 Q3
Security Analysis of CHERI ISA
Is it possible to get to a state where memory safety issues would be deterministically mitigated? Our quest to mitigate memory corruption vulnerabilities led us to examine CHERI (Capability Hardware Enhanced RISC Instructions), which provides memory protection features against many exploited vulnerabilities, or in other words, an architectural solution that breaks exploits.
Concluding the Azure Sphere Security Research Challenge, Microsoft Awards $374,300 to Global Security Research Community
The Azure Sphere Security Research Challenge brought together 70 researchers from 21 countries to help secure Azure Sphere customers and expand Microsoft’s partnerships with the global IoT security research community. During the three-month Azure Sphere Security Research Challenge, researchers surfaced 20 Critical or Important severity security vulnerabilities, with Microsoft awarding $374,300 in bounty awards for 16 bounty eligible reports.
New and improved Security Update Guide!
We’re excited to announce a significant update to the Security Update Guide, our one-stop site for information about all security updates provided by Microsoft. This new version will provide a more intuitive user experience to help protect our customers regardless of what Microsoft products or services they use in their environment.
What to Expect When Reporting Vulnerabilities to Microsoft
At the Microsoft Security Response Center’s (MSRC), our primary mission is to help protect our customers. One of the ways we do this is by working with security researchers to discover security vulnerabilities in our services and products, and then making sure those that pose a threat to customers get fixed.
Control Flow Guard for Clang/LLVM and Rust
As part of our ongoing efforts towards safer systems programming, we’re pleased to announce that Windows Control Flow Guard (CFG) support is now available in the Clang C/C++ compiler and Rust. What is Control Flow Guard? CFG is a platform security technology designed to enforce control flow integrity. It has been available since Windows 8.
Congratulations to the MSRC’s 2020 Most Valuable Security Researchers
Today we announce our Most Valuable Security Researchers for 2020! The MSRC Researcher Recognition program is an integral aspect of recognizing the ongoing partnerships with our community of talented security researchers who report through Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure (CVD). These recognitions run throughout specific periods of the year and provide regular
Microsoft Bug Bounty Programs Year in Review: $13.7M in Rewards
Security researchers are a vital component of the cybersecurity ecosystem that safeguards every facet of digital life and commerce. The researchers who devote time to uncovering and reporting security issues before adversaries can exploit them have earned our collective respect and gratitude. The security landscape is constantly changing with emerging technology and new threats.
Microsoft Joins Open Source Security Foundation
Microsoft has invested in the security of open source software for many years and today I’m excited to share that Microsoft is joining industry partners to create the Open Source Security Foundation (OpenSSF), a new cross-industry collaboration hosted at the Linux Foundation. The OpenSSF brings together work from the Linux Foundation-initiated Core Infrastructure Initiative (CII), the GitHub-initiated Open Source Security Coalition (OSSC), and other open source security efforts to improve the security of open source software by building a broader community, targeted initiatives, and best practices.
Black Hat 2020: See you in the Cloud!
It hardly feels like summer without the annual trip to Las Vegas for Black Hat USA. With this year’s event being totally cloud based, we won’t have the chance to catch up with security researchers, industry partners, and customers in person, an opportunity we look forward to every year. We’ll still be there though, and look forward to the great talks and chatting in the virtual conference platform.
Updates to the Windows Insider Preview Bounty Program
Partnering with the research community is an important part of Microsoft’s holistic approach to defending against security threats. Bounty programs are one part of this partnership, designed to encourage and reward vulnerability research focused on the highest impact to customer security. The Windows Insider Preview (WIP) Bounty Program is a key program for Microsoft and researchers.
Top MSRC 2020 Q2 Security Researchers Announced – Congratulations!
We are excited to announce the top contributing researchers for the 2020 Second Quarter (Q2)! Congratulations to all the researchers who continue to rock the leaderboard, and a big thank you to everyone for your contribution to securing our customers and the ecosystem. The top three researchers of the 2020
July 2020 Security Update: CVE-2020-1350 Vulnerability in Windows Domain Name System (DNS) Server
Today we released an update for CVE-2020-1350, a Critical Remote Code Execution (RCE) vulnerability in Windows DNS Server that is classified as a ‘wormable’ vulnerability and has a CVSS base score of 10.0. This issue results from a flaw in Microsoft’s DNS server role implementation and affects all Windows Server versions.
Solving Uninitialized Kernel Pool Memory on Windows
This blog post outlines the work that Microsoft is doing to eliminate uninitialized kernel pool memory vulnerabilities from Windows and why we’re on this path. For a background on why uninitialized memory matters and what options have been used in the past to tackle this issue, please see our previous blog post.
Machine Learning Security Evasion Competition 2020 Invites Researchers to Defend and Attack
Machine learning (ML) is an increasingly valuable tool in cyber security as adversaries continually evolve their tactics and techniques to evade detection. As machine learning has advanced and sophisticated ML models have been developed to assist security professionals in protecting the cloud, adversaries have been busy developing malware designed to evade ML models.
Solving Uninitialized Stack Memory on Windows
This blog post outlines the work that Microsoft is doing to eliminate uninitialized stack memory vulnerabilities from Windows and why we’re on this path. This blog post will be broken down into a few parts that folks can jump to: Uninitialized Memory Background Potential Solutions to Uninitialized Memory Vulnerabilities InitAll – Automatic Initialization Interesting Findings with InitAll Performance Optimizations Impact for Customers Forward Looking Plans None of this work would have been possible without close partnership between the Visual Studio organization, the Windows organization, and MSRC.
Azure Sphere Security Research Challenge Now Open
The Azure Sphere Security Research Challenge is an expansion of Azure Security Lab, announced at Black Hat in August 2019. At that time, a select group of talented researchers was invited to come and do their worst, emulating criminal hackers in a customer-safe cloud environment. This new research challenge aims to spark new high impact security research in Azure Sphere, a comprehensive IoT security solution delivering end to end security across hardware, OS and the cloud.
The Safety Boat: Kubernetes and Rust
Our team, DeisLabs, recently released a new piece of software called Krustlet, which is a tool for running WebAssembly modules on the popular, open-source container management tool called Kubernetes. Kubernetes is used quite extensively to run cloud software across many vendors and companies and is primarily written in the Go programming language.
Congratulating Our Top 2020 Q1 Security Researchers!
Following the second Security Researcher Quarterly Leaderboard and the 2020 MSRC Most Valuable Security Researchers criteria we published in February 2020, we are excited to announce the 2020 First Quarter (Q1) Security Researcher Leaderboard, listing our top contributing researchers for the last quarter. The top three researchers of the last quarter are: Zhiniang Peng (2870 points), Yuki Chen (1550 points), and Ashar Javed (1520 points).
March 2020 security updates are available
We have released the March security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
Calling for security research in Azure Sphere, now generally available
Today, Microsoft released Azure Sphere into General Availability (GA). Azure Sphere’s mission is to empower every organization on the planet to connect and create secured and trustworthy IoT devices. Azure Sphere is an end-to-end solution for securely connecting existing equipment and for creating new IoT devices with built-in security. The solution includes hardware, OS, and a cloud service, as well as ongoing security and OS updates to help ensure devices remain secured as threats evolve over time.
February 2020 security updates are available
We have released the February security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
Recognizing Security Researchers in 2020
Is it too early to talk about the 2020 MSRC Most Valuable Security Researchers? Five months from now, at the end of June, the program period closes for researchers to be considered for inclusion in the Most Valuable Researchers list. The top researcher list will be revealed at Black Hat North America in August.
Announcing the Xbox Bounty program
We are pleased to announce the launch of the Xbox Bounty program today. The Xbox bounty program invites gamers, security researchers, and technologists around the world to help identify security vulnerabilities in the Xbox network and services, and share them with the Microsoft Xbox team through Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure (CVD). Eligible submissions with a clear and concise proof of concept (POC) are eligible for awards up to US$20,000.
Access Misconfiguration for Customer Support Database
Today, we concluded an investigation into a misconfiguration of an internal customer support database used for Microsoft support case analytics. While the investigation found no malicious use, and although most customers did not have personally identifiable information exposed, we want to be transparent about this incident with all customers and reassure them that we are taking it very seriously and holding ourselves accountable.
Announcing MSRC 2019 Q4 Security Researcher Leaderboard
Following the first Security Researcher Quarterly Leaderboard we published in October 2019, we are excited to announce the MSRC Q4 2019 Security Researcher Leaderboard, which shows the top contributing researchers for the last quarter. In each quarterly leaderboard, we recognize the security researchers who ranked at or above the 95th percentile line based on the total points.
January 2020 security updates are available!
We have released the January security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide. As a reminder, Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 will be out of extended support and no longer receiving updates as of January 14, 2020.
January 2020 Security Updates: CVE-2020-0601
The January security updates include several Important and Critical security updates. As always, we recommend that customers update their systems as quickly as practical. Details for the full set of updates released today can be found in the Security Update Guide. We believe in Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure (CVD) as proven industry best practice to address security vulnerabilities.
Announcing the Microsoft Identity Research Project Grant
We are excited to announce the Microsoft Identity Research Project Grant a new opportunity in partnership with the security community to help protect Microsoft customers. This project grant awards up to $75,000 USD for approved research proposals that improve the security of the Microsoft Identity solutions in new ways for both Consumers (Microsoft Account) and Enterprise (Azure Active Directory).
December 2019 security updates are available
We have released the December security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide. As a reminder, Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 will be out of extended support and no longer receiving updates as of January 14, 2020.
Customer Guidance for the Dopplepaymer Ransomware
Microsoft has been investigating recent attacks by malicious actors using the Dopplepaymerransomware. There is misleading information circulating about Microsoft Teams, along with references to RDP (BlueKeep), as ways in which this malware spreads. Our security research teams have investigated and found no evidence to support these claims. In our investigations we found that the malware relies on remote human operators using existing Domain Admin credentials to spread across an enterprise network.
BlueHat Seattle videos are online!
Were you unable to attend BlueHat Seattle, or wanted to see a session again? We have good news. If you have been waiting for the videos from BlueHat Seattle last month, the wait is over. All videos which the presenter authorized to be recorded are now online and available to anyone.
November 2019 security updates are available!
We have released the November security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide. As a reminder, Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 will be out of extended support and no longer receiving updates as of January 14, 2020.
Using Rust in Windows
This Saturday 9th of November, there will be a keynote from Microsoft engineers Ryan Levick and Sebastian Fernandez at RustFest Barcelona. They will be talking about why Microsoft is exploring Rust adoption, some of the challenges we’ve faced in this process, and the future of Rust adoption in Microsoft. If you want to talk with some of the people working on how Microsoft is evolving its code practices for better security, be sure to attend the keynote and talk to Ryan and Sebastian afterwards!
Vulnerability hunting with Semmle QL: DOM XSS
In two previous blog posts ( part 1 and part 2), we talked about using Semmle QL in C and C++ codebases to find vulnerabilities such as integer overflow, path traversal, and those leading to memory corruption. In this post, we will explore applying Semmle QL to web security by hunting for one of­­­ the most common type of client-side vulnerabilities: DOM-based cross-site scripting (XSS).
Time for day 2 of briefings at BlueHat Seattle!
We hope you enjoyed the first day of our BlueHat briefings and the Bytes of BlueHat reception in our glamping tent (complete with toasted marshmallows). Yesterday, we learned a lot about how XboxOne hardware security has advanced the state of hardware security elsewhere, we heard some surprising correlations between vuln severity, age, and time to fix, and we saw applications for machine learning for malware detection—as well as some of the attack surface for machine learning and how to protect it.
Welcome to the second stage of BlueHat!
We’ve finished two incredible days of security trainings at the Living Computer Museum in Seattle. Now it’s time for the second part of BlueHat: the briefings at ShowBox SoDo. We’ve got a big day planned, so head on down. Please join us for breakfast (we have doughnuts! and bacon! and cereal!
Microsoft Identity Bounty Improvements
Microsoft is continually improving our existing bounty programs. Today we’re happy to share the latest updates to the Microsoft Identity Bounty. Originally launched in July 2018, the Microsoft Identity bounty program has helped build a partnership with the security research community to improve the security of customer and enterprise identity solutions across Azure, Windows, and OpenID standards.
Introducing the ElectionGuard Bounty program
Today we are launching the [ElectionGuard Bounty program](«http://www.microsoft.com/msrc/bounty-electionguard> >). In May 2019, we announced the release of ElectionGuard, a free open-source SDK to make voting more secure, transparent, and accessible. ElectionGuard enables end-to-end verification of elections, open results to third-party organizations for secure validation, and allows individual voters to confirm their votes were correctly counted.
Announcing the Security Researcher Quarterly Leaderboard
Right before Black Hat USA 2019, we announced our new researcher recognition program, and at Black Hat we announced the top researchers from the previous twelve months. Since it’s easier to track your progress with regular updates than with just an annual report, we are excited to
An intern's experience with Rust
Over the course of my internship at the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC), I worked on the safe systems programming languages (SSPL) team to promote safer languages for systems programming where runtime overhead is important, as outlined in this blog. My job was to port a security critical network processing agent into Rust to eliminate the memory safety bugs that had plagued it.
Designing a COM library for Rust
I interned with Microsoft as a Software Engineering Intern in the MSRC UK team in Cheltenham this past summer. I worked in the Safe Systems Programming Language (SSPL) group, which explores safe programming languages as a proactive measure against memory-safety related vulnerabilities. This blog post describes the project that I have been working on under the mentorship of the SSPL team.
October 2019 security updates are available!
We have released the October security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide. As a reminder, Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 will be out of extended support and no longer receiving updates as of January 14, 2020.
Building the Azure IoT Edge Security Daemon in Rust
Azure IoT Edge is an open source, cross platform software project from the Azure IoT team at Microsoft that seeks to solve the problem of managing distribution of compute to the edge of your on-premise network from the cloud. This post explains some of the rationale behind our choice of Rust as the implementation programming language for the Security Daemon component in the product.
MSRC is going to ROOTCON!
The Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) works with partners all over the world to protect Microsoft customers. This week we’re headed to the Philippines to meet security researchers and bounty hunters at ROOTCON 13! Planning on attending ROOTCON? If you want to learn more about how you can earn rewards for reporting vulnerabilities to Microsoft bounty programs, you have two ways to connect with us there:
Meet the BlueHat Content Advisory Board
We couldn’t do BlueHat without the Content Advisory Board, the brain trust reviewing submissions to the CFP. Representing both Microsoft and other parts of security community, the CAB applies their industry and speaker experience to create the BlueHat agenda that’s the right mix of topics and perspectives. We really appreciate the time these people take to review every submission and find the right talks.
Calling all breakers & builders: BlueHat Seattle registration is open!
@TODO: Exciting changes are coming to BlueHat Seattle 2019! If you’d like to attend this premier security conference, we have good news for you: registration for BlueHat Seattle is now open and we hope you register. Wait, isn’t BlueHat invitation-only? It is…but if we haven’t sent you an invitation, we encourage you to request a seat.
Attacking the VM Worker Process
In the past year we invested a lot of time making Hyper-V research more accessible to everyone. Our first blog post, “First Steps in Hyper-V Research”, describes the tools and setup for debugging the hypervisor and examines the interesting attack surfaces of the virtualization stack components. We then published “Fuzzing para-virtualized devices in Hyper-V”, which has been the focus of our friends at the Virtualization Security Team.
September 2019 Security Updates
We have released the September security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide. As a reminder, Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 will be out of extended support and no longer receiving updates as of January 14, 2020.
Acquiring a VHD to Investigate
In a previous post we described some of the differences between on-premises/physical forensics and cyber investigations and those performed in the cloud, and how this can make cloud forensics challenging. That blog post described a method of creating and maintaining a VM image which can be distributed to multiple regions, allowing you to deploy this pre-prepared machine to be used in an investigation in a matter of minutes.
BlueHat Seattle 2019 Call for Papers is Now Open!
2019 has seen a phenomenal BlueHatIL in February followed by a wildly successful BlueHat Shanghai in May… now it’s time to come back home for BlueHat Seattle! 2 days of hands-on technical training (October 22-23, 2019) 2 days of conference talks from industry-leading security researchers and cyber defenders (October 24-25, 2019) great creative spaces ready to spark thought-provoking conversations and collaborative partnerships The Call for Papers (CFP) for BlueHat Seattle 2019 is now open through September 20, 2019.
Scalable infrastructure for investigations and incident response
Traditional computer forensics and cyber investigations are as relevant in the cloud as they are in on-premise environments, but the methods in which to access and perform such investigations differ. This post will describe some of the challenges of bringing on-premises forensics techniques to the cloud and show one solution to overcome these challenges, using Azure functionality.
Announcing the Microsoft Edge Insider Bounty
This week, we released the first Beta preview of the next version of Microsoft Edge. Alongside this, Microsoft is excited to announce the launch of the Microsoft Edge Insider Bounty Program. We welcome researchers to seek out and disclose any high impact vulnerabilities they may find in the next version of Microsoft Edge, based on Chromium, and offer rewards up to US$30,000 for eligible vulnerabilities in Dev and Beta channels.
August 2019 Security Updates
We have released the August security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide. As a reminder, Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 will be out of extended support and no longer receiving updates as of January 14, 2020.
Patch new wormable vulnerabilities in Remote Desktop Services (CVE-2019-1181/1182)
Today Microsoft released a set of fixes for Remote Desktop Services that include two critical Remote Code Execution (RCE) vulnerabilities, CVE-2019-1181 and CVE-2019-1182. Like the previously-fixed ‘BlueKeep’ vulnerability (CVE-2019-0708), these two vulnerabilities are also ‘wormable’, meaning that any future malware that exploits these could propagate from vulnerable computer to vulnerable computer without user interaction.
Microsoft Announces Top Three Contributing Partners in the Microsoft Active Protections Program (MAPP)
Today Microsoft announced the MAPP program Top Vulnerability Contributors, Top Threat Indicator Submitters, and Top Zero-Day Reporting for the period of July 1, 2018 – June 30, 2019. The Microsoft Active Protections Program provides security and protection to customers through cooperation and collaboration with industry leading partners. While all MAPP partners have made a significant impact on the security ecosystem and are commended for their customer-first approach to security, these top contributors have gone above and beyond our expectations.
Announcing 2019 MSRC Most Valuable Security Researchers
Earlier today we announced MSRC’s 2018-2019 Most Valuable Security Researchers at Black Hat. The following 75 researchers hail from all corners of the world and possess varied experience and skills, yet all of them have contributed to securing the Microsoft’s customers and the broader ecosystem. For over a decade, one of Microsoft’s partners in vulnerability research and disclosure has been Trend Micro’s Zero Day Initiative.
Azure Security Lab: a new space for Azure research and collaboration
Azure is exceptionally secure. To help keep it that way, we are doubling the top bounty reward for Azure vulnerabilities to $40,000. But we aren’t stopping there. To make it easier for security researchers to confidently and aggressively test Azure, we are inviting a select group of talented individuals to come and do their worst to emulate criminal hackers in a customer-safe cloud environment called the Azure Security Lab.
Corporate IoT - a path to intrusion
Several sources estimate that by the year 2020 some 50 billion IoT devices will be deployed worldwide. IoT devices are purposefully designed to connect to a network and many are simply connected to the internet with little management or oversight. Such devices still must be identifiable, maintained, and monitored by security teams, especially in large complex enterprises.
Recognizing Security Researchers in 2019
Who’s going to be on the Most Valuable Security Researcher list at Black Hat USA 2019? We’re not announcing the names—yet—but this is how we’ll determine who’s there. How do we define the Most Valuable Security Researchers? The list at Black Hat will be the top tier of researchers based on not just the volume of the reports, but also the impact and accuracy of their reports.
It’s Official – The Way We Recognize Our Security Researchers
We deeply appreciate the partnership of the many talented security researchers who report vulnerabilities to Microsoft through Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure. We pay bounties for research in key areas, and each year at Black Hat USA, we’ve recognized the most impactful researchers helping to protect the ecosystem. That’s not changing; we’re continuing to expand our bounty programs and will continue to recognize researchers with the greatest impact on the security ecosystem.
Meet the MSRC at Black Hat 2019
We’re getting close to Black Hat, and we hope to see you there. Here’s where you can find members of the Microsoft Security Response Center if you’d like to say hello, ask a question about a report you made, discuss a recent blog article, or just show us pictures of your dog.
Microsoft Announces Top Contributing Partners in the Microsoft Active Protections Program (MAPP)
Today we announce the top organizational candidates for Vulnerability Top Contributors, Threat Indicator Top Submitters, and Zero-Day Top Reporting for the period of July 1, 2018 – June 30, 2019. The Microsoft Active Protections Program provides security and protection to customers through cooperation and collaboration with industry leading partners. This bi-directional sharing program of threat and vulnerability data has proven instrumental to help prevent broad attacks and quickly resolve security vulnerabilities in Microsoft products and services.
Why Rust for safe systems programming
In this series, we have explored the need for proactive measures to eliminate a class of vulnerabilities and walked through some examples of memory safety issues we’ve found in Microsoft code that could have been avoided with a different language. Now we’ll peek at why we think that Rust represents the best alternative to C and C++ currently available.
We need a safer systems programming language
In our first post in this series, we discussed the need for proactively addressing memory safety issues. Tools and guidance are demonstrably not preventing this class of vulnerabilities; memory safety issues have represented almost the same proportion of vulnerabilities assigned a CVE for over a decade. We feel that using memory-safe languages will mitigate this in ways that tools and training have not been able to.
Announcing the Microsoft Dynamics 365 Bounty program
One of Microsoft’s many security investments to protect customers is in the partnerships we build with the external security research community. We are excited to announce the launch of theDynamics 365 Bounty program and welcome researchers to seek out and disclose any high impact vulnerabilities they may find in Dynamics 365.
A proactive approach to more secure code
What if we could eliminate an entire class of vulnerabilities before they ever happened? Since 2004, the Microsoft Security Response Centre (MSRC) has triaged every reported Microsoft security vulnerability. From all that triage one astonishing fact sticks out: as Matt Miller discussed in his 2019 presentation at BlueHat IL, the majority of vulnerabilities fixed and with a CVE assigned are caused by developers inadvertently inserting memory corruption bugs into their C and C++ code.
July 2019 Security Update Release
We have released the July security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
Inside the MSRC – Building your own security incident response process
This is the third and last in a series of posts that looks at how Microsoft responds to elevated threats to customers through the Microsoft Security Response Center’s (MSRC) Software and Services Incident Response Plan (SSIRP). Our previous posts discussed how Microsoft protects customers against elevated threats and the anatomy of a SSIRP incident.
Inside the MSRC – Anatomy of a SSIRP incident
This is the second in a series of blog posts that shares how the MSRC responds to elevated threats to customers through the Software and Services Incident Response Plan (SSIRP). In ourlast blog post, we looked at the history of the Microsoft Security Response Center and SSIRP, and how Microsoft takes a holistic view to helping to protect and defend customers.
Inside the MSRC – Customer-centric incident response
The Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) is an integral part of Microsoft’s Cyber Defense Operations Center (CDOC) that brings together security response experts from across the company to help protect, detect, and respond to threats in real-time. Staffed with dedicated teams 24x7, the CDOC has direct access to thousands of security professionals, data scientists, and product engineers throughout Microsoft to ensure rapid response and resolution to security threats.
Prevent the impact of a Linux worm by updating Exim (CVE-2019-10149)
This week, MSRC confirmed the presence of an active Linux worm leveraging a critical Remote Code Execution (RCE) vulnerability, CVE-2019-10149, in Linux Exim email servers running Exim version 4.87 to 4.91. Microsoft Azure infrastructure and Services are not affected; only customer’s Linux IaaS instances running a vulnerable version of Exim are affected.
June 2019 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide.
A Reminder to Update Your Systems to Prevent a Worm
On May 14, Microsoft released fixes for a critical Remote Code Execution vulnerability, CVE-2019-0708, in Remote Desktop Services – formerly known as Terminal Services – that affects some older versions of Windows. In our previous blog post on this topic we warned that the vulnerability is ‘wormable’, and that future malware that exploits this vulnerability could propagate from vulnerable computer to vulnerable computer in a similar way as the WannaCry malware spread across the globe in 2017.
BlueHat Shanghai 2019: Amplifying the power of defensive partnerships around the world
Earlier this week BlueHat Shanghai brought together security researchers and hundreds of cybersecurity professionals from China and across Asia to explore the latest topics in cybersecurity research. Including presentations from Qihoo 360, Baidu, Alibaba and the Chinese Academy of Sciences, BlueHat Shanghai highlighted incredibly talented Chinese researchers and focused on cutting edge topics including container and IoT security.
Microsoft Launches a New Recognition Program for MAPP Partners
There are many dedicated people and organizations who contribute to the protection and security of our common customers. For years, Microsoft has recognized security researchers for helping protect the ecosystem. Now, we’re announcing the launch of a new program to better recognize and thank Microsoft Active Protections Program (MAPP) partners for all they do to protect our customers, including awards and evangelism based on their contributions.
Time travel debugging: It’s a blast! (from the past)
The Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) works to assess vulnerabilities that are externally reported to us as quickly as possible, but time can be lost if we have to confirm details of the repro steps or environment with the researcher to reproduce the vulnerability. Microsoft has made our “Time Travel Debugging” (TTD) tool publicly available to make it easy for security researchers to provide full repro, shortening investigations and potentially contributing to higher bounties (see “Report quality definitions for Microsoft’s Bug Bounty programs”).
May 2019 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide.
Prevent a worm by updating Remote Desktop Services (CVE-2019-0708)
Today Microsoft released fixes for a critical Remote Code Execution vulnerability, CVE-2019-0708, in Remote Desktop Services – formerly known as Terminal Services – that affects some older versions of Windows. The Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) itself is not vulnerable. This vulnerability is pre-authentication and requires no user interaction. In other words, the vulnerability is ‘wormable’, meaning that any future malware that exploits this vulnerability could propagate from vulnerable computer to vulnerable computer in a similar way as the WannaCry malware spread across the globe in 2017.
April 2019 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide. Tags Security Advisory Security Update Update Tuesday
Microsoft Bounty Program Updates: Faster bounty review, faster payments, and higher rewards
In 2018 The Microsoft Bounty Program awarded over $2,000,000 to encourage and reward external security research in key technologies to protect our customers. Building on that success, we are excited to announce a number of improvements in our bounty programs to better serve the security research community. Faster bounty review – As of January 2019, the Cloud, Windows, and Azure DevOps programs now award bounties upon completion of reproduction and assessment of each submission, rather than waiting until the final fix has been determined.
Vulnerability hunting with Semmle QL, part 2
The first part of this series introduced Semmle QL, and how the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) are using it to investigate variants of vulnerabilities reported to us. This post discusses an example of how we’ve been using it proactively, covering a security audit of an Azure firmware component. This was part of a wider defense in depth security review of Azure services, exploring attack vectors from the point of view of a hypothetical adversary who has already penetrated at least one security boundary, and now sits in the operating environment of a service backend (marked with * on the diagram below).
Join Microsoft Security Response at the Product Security Operations forum at LocoMocoSec!
The MSRC is more than managing vulnerability reports, publishing Microsoft security updates, and defending the cloud. The MSRC is passionate about helping everyone improve internal engineering practices and supporting the defender community, and are excited to partner with Blackberry to host a Product Security Operations Forum at LocoMocoSec on April 18, 2019.
Local privilege escalation via the Windows I/O Manager: a variant finding collaboration
The Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) investigates all reports of security vulnerabilities affecting Microsoft products and services to help make our customers and the global online community more secure. We appreciate the excellent vulnerability research reported to us regularly from the security community, and we consider it a privilege to work with these researchers.
Call for Papers | Microsoft BlueHat Shanghai 2019
The Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) recently announced our first BlueHat security conference in Shanghai which will take place on May 29-30, 2019. After 15 years of BlueHat events in Redmond, Washington and Israel, we are thrilled to expand to a new location. We work with many talented security researchers
March 2019 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide.
Practical advice for earning higher Microsoft bounty awards
This year at the Nullcon International Security Conference I shared practical advice for how security researchers can maximize the impact of their security vulnerability submissions and earn higher bounty awards under the Microsoft Bounty Program. For those who couldn’t be there, I had two core pieces of advice. First , focus vulnerability research on the products and services that are eligible for bounty rewards.
BlueHat Shanghai 2019 Call for Papers is Now Open!
We know security experts with diverse skills and experiences are found around the world. This year, the BlueHat Security Conference is coming to Shanghai! BlueHat Shanghai 2019 will take place on May 29-30 at W Shanghai - The Bund. We want to provide a venue for security researchers to come together to learn and share information, innovations, best practices and actionable items, as well as to engage in a rich conversation about security.
February 2019 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide.
Fuzzing para-virtualized devices in Hyper-V
Introduction Hyper-V is the backbone of Azure, running on its Hosts to provide efficient and fair sharing of resources, but also isolation. That’s why we, in the vulnerability research team for Windows, have been working in the background for years now helping secure Hyper-V. And why Microsoft invites security researchers across the globe to submit their vulnerabilities through the Hyper-V Bounty Program for payment of up to $250,000 USD.
Microsoft’s Cyber Defense Operations Center shares best practices
Today, a single breach, physical or virtual, can cause millions of dollars of damage to an organization and potentially billions in financial losses to the global economy. Each week seems to bring a new disclosure of a cybersecurity breach somewhere in the world. As we look at the current state of cybersecurity challenges today, we see the same types of attacks, but the sophistication and scope of each attack continues to grow and evolve.
Announcing the Microsoft Azure DevOps Bounty program
The Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) is pleased to announce the launch of the Azure DevOps Bounty program, a program dedicated to providing rock-solid security for our DevOps customers. Starting January 17, 2019, we’re excited to offer rewards up to US$20,000 for eligible vulnerabilities in Azure DevOps online services and the latest release of Azure DevOps server.
January 2019 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide.
December 2018 Security Update Release
Today, we released a security update for Internet Explorer after receiving a report from Google about a new vulnerability being used in targeted attacks. Customers who have Windows Update enabled and have applied the latest security updates, are protected automatically. We encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. Microsoft would like to thank Google for their assistance.
December 2018 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide.
First Steps in Hyper-V Research
Microsoft has put a lot of effort in Hyper-V security. Hyper-V, and the whole virtualization stack, runs at the core of many of our products: cloud computing, Windows Defender Application Guard, and technology built on top of Virtualization Based Security (VBS). Because Hyper-V is critical to so much of what we do, we want to encourage researchers to study it and tell us about the vulnerabilities they find: we even offer a $250K bounty for those who do.
November 2018 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide.
Should You Send Your Pen Test Report to the MSRC?
Every day, the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) receives vulnerability reports from security researchers, technology/industry partners, and customers. We want those reports, because they help us make our products and services more secure. High-quality reports that include proof of concept, details of an attack or demonstration of a vulnerability, and a detailed writeup of the issue are extremely helpful and actionable.
BlueHat v18 Content Now Available
Last month we wrapped up another great BlueHat event. As an organizer, it is great to hear that the content is so strong that we have participants have to make hard choices on what to attend. BlueHat is about the community we build and the experiences we share. To further support that we are making slides and videos of presentations available publicly.
October 2018 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide. MSRC team
Standing behind “MSRC Listens”
Last week at BlueHat’s “MSRC Listens” session, I took the stage with Mechele Gruhn, manager of the Vulnerability Response PM team, to explain how MSRC is changing our communication, workflows, and tooling to deliver an improved user experience for our partners in the security research community. We promised to communicate more about what’s happening in the MSRC that affects our customers and research partners.
Behind BlueHat: The Art
We are just one day away from the opening of BlueHat v18 and excitement is building. One of the questions that I have gotten more frequently the past couple years is about the artwork we use for BlueHat. So yes there is a theme. 😊 Starting in 2014, we introduced the Top Hat logo which the community took to.
September 2018 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide. MSRC team
Microsoft Security Servicing Criteria for Windows
One of our goals in the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) is to be more transparent with security researchers and our customers on the criteria we use for determining when we intend to address a reported vulnerability through a security update. Our belief is that improving transparency on this topic helps provide clarity on how we assess risk, sets expectations for the types of vulnerabilities that we intend to service, and facilitates constructive dialogue as the threat landscape evolves over time.
Inside MSRC: Sharing Our Story & Customer Tips
For the last 20 years, the Microsoft Security Response Center has been an integral part of Microsoft’s commitment to customer security. We are often called on to talk about the work we do and how customers can apply the lessons we have learned over that period to better their security posture.
Vulnerability hunting with Semmle QL, part 1
Previously on this blog, we’ve talked about how MSRC automates the root cause analysis of vulnerabilities reported and found. After doing this, our next step is variant analysis: finding and investigating any variants of the vulnerability. It’s important that we find all such variants and patch them simultaneously, otherwise we bear the risk of these being exploited in the wild. In this post, I’d like to explain the automation we use in variant finding. For the past year or so, we’ve been augmenting our manual code review processes with Semmle, a third-party static analysis environment. It compiles code to a relational database (the snapshot database – a combination of database and source code), which is queried using Semmle QL, a declarative, object-oriented query language designed for program analysis. The basic workflow is that, after root cause analysis, we write queries to find code patterns that are semantically similar to the original vulnerability. Any results are triaged as usual and provided to our engineering teams for a fix to be developed. Also, the queries are placed in a central repository to be re-run periodically by MSRC and other security teams. This way, we can scale our variant finding over time and across multiple codebases. In addition to variant analysis, we’ve been using QL proactively, in our security reviews of source code. This will be the topic of a future blog post. For now, let’s look at some real-world examples inspired by MSRC cases.
August 2018 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide. MSRC team
Analysis and mitigation of L1 Terminal Fault (L1TF)
In January 2018, Microsoft released an advisory and security updates for a new class of hardware vulnerabilities involving speculative execution side channels (known as Spectre and Meltdown). In this blog post, we will provide a technical analysis of a new speculative execution side channel vulnerability known as L1 Terminal Fault (L1TF) which has been assigned CVE-2018-3615 (for SGX), CVE-2018-3620 (for operating systems and SMM), and CVE-2018-3646 (for virtualization).
Microsoft’s Top 100 Security Researchers – Black Hat 2018 Edition
This morning we are excited to unveil the security researcher leaderboard at the Black Hat Security Conference. This list recognizes the top security researchers who have contributed research to the Microsoft products and services. If you are curious on how we build the list, check out our blog from last week on The Making of the Top 100 Researcher List.
Announcing the BlueHat v18 Schedule
Where did the summer go? This year the BlueHat Security Conference moved forward in the schedule to late September. Next year it will settle into a steady orbit of early October moving forward. With that change in schedule, it is hard to believe that it is time to reveal the schedule for BlueHat v18.
The Making of the Top 100 Researcher List
At Black Hat USA each year, we unveil the Top 100 Security Researcher list to reflect the amazing engagement we get from the community. During this period, we had several thousand researchers engage with the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC). We appreciate all the partnership and coordination that goes on throughout the year.
Recognizing Q4 Top 5 Bounty Hunters
We have tabulated the results from April-June 2018. The Top 5 Bounty Hunters for Q4 are now in. As with our list from Q3, we want to recognize both the leaders in payouts and in number of successful submissions. We appreciate the hard work and dedication of the following individuals and companies who have contributed to securing Microsoft’s products and services over our fourth quarter.
Microsoft launches Identity Bounty program
Modern security depends today on collaborative communication of identities and identity data within and across domains. A customer’s digital identity is often the key to accessing services and interacting across the internet. Microsoft has invested heavily in the security and privacy of both our consumer (Microsoft Account) and enterprise (Azure Active Directory) identity solutions.
July 2018 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide.
Announcing Changes to Microsoft’s Mitigation Bypass Bounty
Today we’re announcing a change to the Mitigation Bypass Bounty that removes Control Flow Guard (CFG) from the set of in-scope mitigations. In this blog, we’ll provide additional background and explain why we’re making this change. Mitigation Bypass Bounty Background Microsoft started the Mitigation Bypass Bounty in 2013 with the goal of helping us improve key defense-in-depth mitigation technologies by learning about bypasses.
Draft of Microsoft Security Servicing Commitments for Windows
Updated September 10, 2018 The Servicing Criteria for Windows has transitioned to an official document and can be found at the link below. Microsoft thanks the members of the research community who provided feedback on the draft copy. Microsoft Security Servicing Criteria for Windows
June 2018 Security Update Release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide. MSRC team
Analysis and mitigation of speculative store bypass (CVE-2018-3639)
In January, 2018, Microsoft published an advisory and security updates for a new class of hardware vulnerabilities involving speculative execution side channels (known as Spectre and Meltdown). In this blog post, we will provide a technical analysis of an additional subclass of speculative execution side channel vulnerability known as Speculative Store Bypass (SSB) which has been assigned CVE-2018-3639.
May 2018 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide. MSRC team
BlueHat v18 Announced & Call for Papers Opens
We are back! Microsoft is excited to announce the next installment of the BlueHat Security Conference – BlueHat v18. We will be holding the event at Microsoft’s headquarter campus September 25-27, 2018. This year we are adding the option for workshops and networking on the first day prior to the content beginning.
Hyper-V Debugging Symbols Are Publicly Available
The security of Microsoft’s cloud services is a top priority for us. One of the technologies that is central to cloud security is Microsoft Hyper-V which we use to isolate tenants from one another in the cloud. Given the importance of this technology, Microsoft has made and continues to make significant investment in the security of Hyper-V and the powerful security features that it enables, such as Virtualization-Based Security (VBS).
Recognizing Q3 Top 5 Bounty Hunters
Throughout the year, security researchers submit some amazing work to us under the Microsoft Bug Bounty program. Starting this quarter, we want to give a shout out to and acknowledge the hard work and dedication of the following individuals and companies who have contributed to securing Microsoft’s products and services over our third quarter (January-March 2018).
April 2018 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. By default, Windows 10 receives these updates automatically, and for customers running previous versions, we recommend they turn on automatic updates as a best practice. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
Triaging a DLL planting vulnerability
DLL planting (aka binary planting/hijacking/preloading) resurface every now and then, it is not always clear on how Microsoft will respond to the report. This blog post will try to clarify the parameters considered while triaging DLL planting issues. It is well known that when an application loads a DLL without specifying a fully qualified path, Windows attempts to locate the DLL by searching a well-defined set of directories in an order known as DLL search order.
KVA Shadow: Mitigating Meltdown on Windows
On January 3rd, 2018, Microsoft released an advisory and security updates that relate to a new class of discovered hardware vulnerabilities, termed speculative execution side channels, that affect the design methodology and implementation decisions behind many modern microprocessors. This post dives into the technical details of Kernel Virtual Address (KVA) Shadow which is the Windows kernel mitigation for one specific speculative execution side channel: the rogue data cache load vulnerability (CVE-2017-5754, also known as “Meltdown” or “Variant 3”).
Mitigating speculative execution side channel hardware vulnerabilities
On January 3rd, 2018, Microsoft released an advisory and security updates related to a newly discovered class of hardware vulnerabilities involving speculative execution side channels (known as Spectre and Meltdown) that affect AMD, ARM, and Intel CPUs to varying degrees. If you haven’t had a chance to learn about these issues, we recommend watching The Case of Spectre and Meltdown by the team at TU Graz from BlueHat Israel, reading the blog post by Jann Horn (@tehjh) of Google Project Zero, or reading the FOSDEM 2018 presentation by Jon Masters of Red Hat.
Speculative Execution Bounty Launch
Today, Microsoft is announcing the launch of a limited-time bounty program for speculative execution side channel vulnerabilities. This new class of vulnerabilities was disclosed in January 2018 and represented a major advancement in the research in this field. In recognition of that threat environment change, we are launching a bounty program to encourage research into the new class of vulnerability and the mitigations Microsoft has put in place to help mitigate this class of issues.
March 2018 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. By default, Windows 10 receives these updates automatically, and for customers running previous versions, we recommend they turn on automatic updates as a best practice. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
Inside the MSRC– The Monthly Security Update Releases
For the second in this series of blog entries we want to look into which vulnerability reports make it into the monthly release cadence. It may help to start with some history. In September 2003 we made a change from a release anytime approach to a mostly predictable, monthly release cadence.
February 2018 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. By default, Windows 10 receives these updates automatically, and for customers running previous versions, we recommend they turn on automatic updates as a best practice. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
Inside the MSRC – How we recognize our researchers
This is the first of a series of blog entries to give some insight into the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) business and how we work with security researchers and vulnerability reports. The Microsoft Security Response Center actively recognizes those security researchers who help us to protect our several billion customers and their endpoints in several ways.
January 2018 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. By default, Windows 10 receives these updates automatically, and for customers running previous versions, we recommend they turn on automatic updates as a best practice. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
December 2017 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. By default, Windows 10 receives these updates automatically, and for customers running previous versions, we recommend they turn on automatic updates as a best practice. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
Clarifying the behavior of mandatory ASLR 
Last week, the CERT/CC published an advisory describing some unexpected behavior they observed when enabling system-wide mandatory Address Space Layout Randomization (ASLR) using Windows Defender Exploit Guard (WDEG) and EMET on Windows 8 and above. In this blog post, we will explain the configuration issue that CERT/CC encountered and describe work arounds to enable the desired behavior.
November 2017 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. By default, Windows 10 receives these updates automatically, and for customers running previous versions, we recommend they turn on automatic updates as a best practice. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
October 2017 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. By default, Windows 10 receives these updates automatically, and for customers running previous versions, we recommend they turn on automatic updates as a best practice. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
VulnScan – Automated Triage and Root Cause Analysis of Memory Corruption Issues 
The Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) receives reports about potential vulnerabilities in our products and it’s the job of our engineering team to assess the severity, impact, and root cause of these issues. In practice, a significant proportion of these reports turn out to be memory corruption issues. In order to root cause these issues, an MSRC security engineer typically needs to analyze the crash and try to understand what went wrong.
Extending the Microsoft Office Bounty Program
Microsoft announces the extension of the Microsoft Office Bounty Program through December 31, 2017. This extension is retroactive for any cases submitted during the interim. The engagement we have had with the security community has been great and we are looking to continue that collaboration on the Office Insider Builds on Windows.
September 2017 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. By default, Windows 10 receives these updates automatically, and for customers running previous versions, we recommend they turn on automatic updates as a best practice. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
Announcing the BlueHat v17 Schedule
September is here! The dash from the close of the call for papers to now has been amazing. We had nearly two hundred submissions spanning the gamut of security topics and presenters. The result is a solid schedule that will challenge and educate all attendees. On behalf of the content advisory board, I want to thank everyone who submitted a paper for consideration.
Moving Beyond EMET II – Windows Defender Exploit Guard
Since we last wrote about the future of EMET and how it relates to Windows 10 back in November 2016 (see Moving Beyond EMET), we have received lots of invaluable feedback from EMET customers and enthusiasts regarding the upcoming EMET end of life. Based on that feedback, we are excited to share significant new exploit protection and threat mitigation improvements coming with the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update!
August 2017 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. By default, Windows 10 receives these updates automatically, and for customers running previous versions, we recommend they turn on automatic updates as a best practice. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security Update Guide.
The MSRC 2017 list of “Top 100” security researchers
Security researchers play an essential role in Microsoft’s security strategy and are key to community-based defense. To show our appreciation for their hard work and partnership, each year at BlackHat North America, the Microsoft Security Response Center highlights contributions of these researchers through the list of “Top 100” security researchers reporting to Microsoft.
Announcing the Windows Bounty Program
Windows 10 represents the best and newest in our strong commitment to security with world-class mitigations. One of Microsoft’s longstanding strategies toward improving software security involves investing in defensive technologies that make it difficult and costly for attackers to find, exploit and leverage vulnerabilities. We built in mitigations and defenses such as DEP, ASLR, CFG, CIG, ACG, Device Guard, and Credential Guard to harden our systems and we continue adding defenses such as Windows Defender Application Guard to significantly increase protection to harden entry points while ensuring the customer experience is seamless.
EnglishmansDentist Exploit Analysis
Introduction We are continuing our series of blog posts dissecting the exploits released by ShadowBrokers in April 2017. After the first two posts about the SMB exploits known as EternalChampion and EternalSynergy, we’ll move this time to analyze a different tool and we’ll focus on the exploit named EnglishmansDentist designed to target Exchange Server 2003.
Eternal Synergy Exploit Analysis
Introduction Recently we announced a series of blog posts dissecting the exploits released by the ShadowBrokers in April 2017; specifically some of the less explored exploits. This week we are going to take a look at Eternal Synergy, an SMBv1 authenticated exploit. This one is particularly interesting because many of the exploitation steps are purely packet-based, as opposed to local shellcode execution.
July 2017 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. By default, Windows 10 receives these updates automatically, and for customers running previous versions, we recommend they turn on automatic updates as a best practice. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide.
Eternal Champion Exploit Analysis
Recently, a group named the ShadowBrokers published several remote server exploits targeting various protocols on older versions of Windows. In this post we are going to look at the EternalChampion exploit in detail to see what vulnerabilities it exploited, how it exploited them, and how the latest mitigations in Windows 10 break the exploit as-written.
Update on Petya malware attacks
As happened recently with WannaCrypt, we again face a malicious attack in the form of ransomware, Petya. In early reports, there was a lot of conflicting information reported on the attacks, including conflation of unrelated and misleading pieces of data, so Microsoft teams mobilized to investigate and analyze, enabling our Malware Protection team to release signatures to detect and protect against the malware.
Extending the Microsoft Edge Bounty Program
Over the past ten months we have paid out over $200,000 USD in bounties. This collaboration with the research community has resulted in significant improvements in Edge security and has allowed us to offer more proactive security for our customers. Keeping in line with our philosophy of protecting customers and proactively partnering with researchers, today we are changing the Edge on Windows Insider Preview (WIP) bounty program from a time bound to a sustained bounty program.
Tales from the MSRC: from pixels to POC
Is this thing still on? It’s been a while since we’ve posted to this blog and we think it’s time to start posting deep technical content about Security Research & Defense (SRD) again. For readers who are new or may have forgotten, this blog is the home of the MSRC Vulnerabilities & Mitigations engineering team.
June 2017 security update release
Microsoft releases additional updates for older platforms to protect against potential nation-state activity Today, as part of our regular Update Tuesday schedule, we have taken action to provide additional critical security updates to address vulnerabilities that are at heightened risk of exploitation due to past nation-state activity and disclosures. Some of the releases today are new, and some are for older platforms under custom support agreements, that we are making publicly available today.
BlueHat v17 Call for Papers Opens
Calling security professionals and enthusiasts throughout the world. Microsoft is pleased to open the Call for Papers for our BlueHat v17 Security Conference. Potential speakers have from June 1st through August 18th to submit abstract proposals for this unique opportunity. As in past events, we are looking for individuals to challenge the thinking and actions we do in security as well as join the community discussion on the current threat landscape that is impacting our customers.
Extending Microsoft Edge Bounty Program
Over the past 10 months, we’ve paid out more than $200,000 USD in bounties to researchers reporting vulnerabilities through the Microsoft Edge Bounty Program. Partnering with the research community has helped improve Microsoft Edge security, and to continue this collaboration, today we’re extending the end date of the Edge on Windows Insider Preview (WIP) bounty program to June 30, 2017.
Customer Guidance for WannaCrypt attacks
Microsoft solution available to protect additional products Today many of our customers around the world and the critical systems they depend on were victims of malicious “WannaCrypt” software. Seeing businesses and individuals affected by cyberattacks, such as the ones reported today, was painful. Microsoft worked throughout the day to ensure we understood the attack and were taking all possible actions to protect our customers.
Coming together to address Encapsulated PostScript (EPS) attacks
Today’s security updates include three updates that exemplify how the security ecosystem can come together to help protect consumers and enterprises. We would like to thank FireEye and ESET for working with us. Customers that have the latest security updates installed are protected against the attacks described below. As a best practice to ensure customers have the latest protections, we recommend they upgrade to the most current versions.
May 2017 security update release
Today, we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. By default, Windows 10 receives these updates automatically, and for customers running previous versions, we recommend they turn on automatic updates as a best practice. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide.
Taking your feedback on the Security Update Guide
The Security Update Guide has been in public preview since November 2016. This month marked our first release when security update information was published entirely in the new format. Over the last few months, customers and partners have provided a lot of feedback on the direction and implementation of the Security Update Guide.
Bountycraft at Nullcon 2017
Security is a critical component of our products at Microsoft. A strong emphasis on security is a persistent factor throughout our entire development process. Microsoft is committed to designing and developing secure software. Testing is performed both internally and by working closely with the broader security community. This is done through a wide range of partnerships and programs including bug bounties to ensure that customers receive the most secure products.
Protecting customers and evaluating risk
Today, Microsoft triaged a large release of exploits made publicly available by Shadow Brokers. Understandingly, customers have expressed concerns around the risk this disclosure potentially creates. Our engineers have investigated the disclosed exploits, and most of the exploits are already patched. Below is our update on the investigation. When a potential vulnerability is reported to Microsoft, either from an internal or external source, the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) kicks off an immediate and thorough investigation.
April 2017 security update release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide. MSRC team
Announcing the new Bug Bounty Program for Office Insider Builds on Windows
We’ve engineered Office to be secure by design and continually invest in enhancing its security capabilities. In the spirit of maintaining a high security bar in Office, we’re launching the Bug Bounty Program for Office Insider Builds on Windows. The Office Bug Bounty Program complements our continuous internal engineering investments that include designing secure features through threat modeling, security in code reviews, security automation, and internal penetration testing.
Microsoft BlueHat v17 Dates Announced - Update 4/3/2017
Update - The Call For Papers (CFP) for BlueHat v17 will be held from 6/1/2017 - 8/18/2017. We will be setting up a submissions portal for web based submissions of papers. The portal will be live on 6/1/2017. Please do not send submissions to [email protected]. Microsoft is pleased to announce that the dates for BlueHat v17 have been set for November 8-9, 2017, here in Redmond, WA USA.
March 2017 security update release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about this month’s security updates can be found on the Security Update Guide. Security bulletins were also published this month to give customers extra time to ensure they are ready to transition their processes.
Office 365 security researchers: Double your bounties March-May 2017
Microsoft strives to protect our customers and we’re constantly improving our security posture to meet their needs. We realize the desire of researchers and customers to security test our services to ensure they can trust us and our solutions. We also believe that if a researcher informs us of a security flaw in our Office 365 services, they should be awarded for protecting us.
SHA-1 Collisions Research
Today, a group of eight researchers from across the security industry released a research report on SHA-1 that demonstrates for the first time, a “hash collision” for the full SHA-1 hash algorithm (called “SHAttered”). This is a significant step toward understanding this type of security issue, a milestone in cryptanalysis that has been underway for the past decade.
Adobe Flash Player security vulnerability release
Today, we released an Adobe Flash Player security update to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to turn on automatic updates. More information about these updates can be found on the Security Update Guide. MSRC team
February 2017 security update release
UPDATE: 2/15/17: We will deliver updates as part of the planned March Update Tuesday, March 14, 2017. Our top priority is to provide the best possible experience for customers in maintaining and protecting their systems. This month, we discovered a last minute issue that could impact some customers and was not resolved in time for our planned updates today.
EMET 5.52 update is now available
EMET 5.52 is the latest version of the Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) and is now available for download. EMET 5.52 is a minor update from EMET 5.51 to address the following: An issue with the EAF mitigation that causes some applications to hang on Windows 7 SP1. A fix to the MSI installer to allow in-place upgrade behavior.
January 2017 security update release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC team
December 2016 security update release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC team
Furthering our commitment to security updates
Microsoft is committed to delivering comprehensive security updates to our customers. Information about the security updates we release are currently made available on the Microsoft Security Bulletin website. However, our customers have asked for better access to update information, as well as easier ways to customize their view to serve a diverse set of needs.
November 2016 security update release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC team
Moving Beyond EMET
EMET – Then and Now Microsoft’s Trustworthy Computing initiative was 7 years old in 2009 when we first released the Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET). Despite substantial improvements in Windows OS security during that same period, it was clear that the way we shipped Windows at the time (3-4 years between major releases) was simply too slow to respond quickly to emerging threats.
BlueHat v16 Keynote announced
Microsoft is excited to announce David Kennedy, CEO of TrustedSec and Binary Defense Systems, as the BlueHat v16 keynote speaker. David is a well-known speaker from the community, a published author, and the founder of the DerbyCon Security Conference. His keynote, entitled “The Security Monty Python and the Holy Grail”, will open the general conference this Thursday.
October 2016 security update release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC team
BlueHat IL 2017 Announced
Microsoft is thrilled to announce BlueHat IL 2017. This will mark the first time BlueHat is held in Tel Aviv and it will take place on January 24-25, 2017. Given its location, Israel further serves as a harness which draws in researchers from across Europe, Asia and the Middle East.
Security Engineering Evolution in Office 2016 for Mac
Security is a critical component in all our products at Microsoft. An emphasis on strong security starts at the beginning of all our work, including threat modelling as part of the design process and the consideration of Apple’s own security recommendations for our products on Apple’s platforms. As an example of this approach, I’d like to share some of the work we’re doing to help secure Mac Office 2016.
Update to the Microsoft Edge Web Platform on Windows Insider Preview Bug Bounty Program terms
On August 4, 2016 we launched a bounty program that targets Remote Code Execution (RCE) vulnerabilities in Microsoft Edge on the Windows Insider Preview Slow (WIP slow). Today, we will be making additions to this bounty program. Since security is a continuous effort and not a destination, we prioritize acquiring different types of vulnerabilities in different points of time.
September 2016 security update release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC Team
Announcing a Microsoft .NET Core and ASP.NET Core Bug Bounty
It’s our pleasure to announce another exciting expansion of the Microsoft Bounty Programs. Today, we will be adding .NET Core and ASP.NET Core to our suite of ongoing bounty programs. We are offering a bounty on the Windows and Linux versions of .NET Core and ASP.NET Core starting on September 1, 2016.
BlueHat v16 Schedule Announced
Over the summer we had overwhelming response to our BlueHat v16 call for papers. We would like to give a special thanks to all who submitted papers for consideration. The range of content and quality of content was exceptional. So with that, today we are happy to announce our schedule for the general audience portion of the conference.
August 2016 security update release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC team
Microsoft Bounty Programs Expansion – Microsoft Edge Remote Code Execution (RCE) Bounty
I’m very happy to announce another addition to the Microsoft Bounty Programs. Microsoft will be hosting a bounty for Remote Code Execution vulnerabilities in Microsoft Edge on Windows Insider Preview builds. This bounty continues our partnership with the security research community in working to secure our platforms, in pre-release stages of the development process.
July 2016 security update release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC team
June 2016 security update release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC team
Microsoft Bounty Program expansion - .NET Core and ASP.NET RC2 Beta Bounty
Today I have another exciting expansion of the Microsoft Bounty Program. Please visit https://aka.ms/BugBounty to find out more. As we approach release for .NET Core and ASP.NET, we would like to get even more feedback from the security research community. We are offering a bounty on the .NET Core and ASP.
BlueHat v16 Announced
Microsoft is pleased to announce our sixteenth BlueHat Security Conference set for November 3-4, 2016 at the Microsoft Conference Center here in Redmond. BlueHat is a unique opportunity for Microsoft engineers and the security community to come together learn about the current threat landscape and challenge the thinking and we actions we do in security.
May 2016 security update release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC team
Changes to Security Update Links
Updates have historically been published on both the Microsoft Download Center and the Microsoft Update Catalog and Security Bulletins linked directly to update packages on the Microsoft Download Center. Some updates will no longer be available from the Microsoft Download Center. Security bulletins will continue to link directly to the updates, but will point to the packages on the Microsoft Update Catalog for updates not available on the Microsoft Download Center.
Microsoft Bounty Programs Expansion - Nano Server Technical Preview Bounty
Microsoft is pleased to announce another expansion of the Microsoft Bounty Programs. Today we begin a bounty for the Nano Server installation option of Windows Server 2016Technical Preview 5. Please visit https://aka.ms/BugBounty to find more details. Nano Server is a remotely administered, headless installation option of the server operating system. In this first release, the Nano Server deployment is focused on two scenarios:
April 2016 Security Update Release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC Team
Microsoft Bounty Programs Announce Expansion - Bounty for Microsoft OneDrive
At Microsoft, we continue to add new properties to our security bug bounty programs to help keep our customer’s secure. Today, I’m pleased to announce the addition of Microsoft OneDrive to the Microsoft Online Services Bug Bounty Program. This addition further incentivizes security researchers to report service vulnerabilities to Microsoft. As part of the Microsoft Online Services Bug Bounty Program, the payouts will range from $500 - $15,000 USD.
March 2016 Security Update Release
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC Team
February 2016 Security Update Release Summary
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC Team
Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) version 5.5 is now available
The Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) benefits enterprises and all computer users by helping to protect against security threats and breaches that can disrupt businesses and daily lives. It does this by anticipating, diverting, terminating, blocking, or otherwise invalidating the most common actions and techniques adversaries might use to compromise a computer.
January 2016 Security Update Release Summary
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC Team
Triaging the exploitability of IE/EDGE crashes
Introduction Both Internet Explorer (IE) and Edge have seen significant changes in order to help protect customers from security threats. This work has featured a number of mitigations that together have not only rendered classes of vulnerabilities not-exploitable, but also dramatically raised the cost for attackers to develop a working exploit.
December 2015 Security Update Release Summary
Today we released security updates to provide additional protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC Team
BlueHat v15 Announces Schedule and Registration
As we inch closer to the 15th BlueHat Security Conference, we are happy to announce the lineup of speakers and topics for this event. This year will continue with a solid speaker and topic selection that engage engineers, executives, and invited guests to discuss and tackle some of the hardest problems facing the industry today.
November 2015 Security Update Release Summary
Today we released security updates to provide protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC Team
EMET: To be, or not to be, A Server-Based Protection Mechanism
Hi Folks – Platforms PFE Dan Cuomo here to discuss a common question seen in the field: “My customer is deploying EMET and would like to know if it is supported on Server Operating Systems.” On the surface there is a simple answer to this question, however with a little poking, a little prodding, the question quickly becomes:
Microsoft Bounty Programs Expansion - .NET Core and ASP.NET Beta Bounty
Today, I have another exciting expansion of the Microsoft Bounty Programs to announce. Please visit https://aka.ms/bugbounty to find out more. I’ll be discussing this new bounty in my talk at SyScan360 on October 21, 2015. We are delighted to offer a bounty for the .NET Core and ASP.NET Beta which Microsoft released earlier this month.
Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) version 5.5 Beta is now available
Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) version 5.5 Beta is now available The Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) benefits enterprises and all computer users by helping to protect against security threats and breaches that can disrupt businesses and daily lives. It does this by anticipating, diverting, terminating, blocking, or otherwise invalidating the most common actions and techniques adversaries might use to compromise a computer.
Announcing BlueHat v15 Conference
We are happy to announce the 15th version of the Microsoft BlueHat Security Conference set for January 12-13, 2016. The annual security conference brings internal and external speakers to educate and engage Microsoft’s engineering community and their executives. Work is under way currently to set the schedule for this event. Attendance at BlueHat is open to Microsoft full time employees, contingent staff, and invited researchers, luminaries, partners, and customers.
October 2015 Security Update Release Summary
Today we released security updates to provide protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC Team
September 2015 Security Update Release Summary
Today we released security updates to provide protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC Team
What makes a good Microsoft Defense Bounty submission?
One of Microsoft’s longstanding strategies toward improving software security continues to involve investing in defensive technologies that make it difficult and costly for attackers to exploit vulnerabilities. These solutions generally have a broad and long lasting impact on software security because they focus on eliminating classes of vulnerabilities or breaking the exploitation primitives that attackers rely on.
Security Update Solution Further Protects Customer Devices
On Tuesday, August 18, 2015, Microsoft released a security update solution to address a vulnerability. The update is for all supported versions of Internet Explorer. We recommend customers to apply this update as soon as possible by following the directions on the TechNet.com/Security website, in Security Bulletin MS15-093. More information about this bulletin can be found at Microsoft’s Bulletin Summary page.
August 2015 Security Update Release Summary
Today we released security updates to provide protections against malicious attackers. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. More information about this month’s security updates and advisories can be found in the Security TechNet Library. MSRC Team
Defending against CVE-2015-1769: a logical issue exploited via a malicious USB stick
Introduction Today Microsoft released update MS15-085 to address CVE-2015-1769, an important severity security issue in Mount Manager. It affects both client and server versions, from Windows Vista to Windows 10. The goal of this blog post is to provide information on the detection guidance to help defenders detect attempts to exploit this issue.
Microsoft Bounty Programs Expansion - Bounty for Defense, Authentication Bonus, and RemoteApp
I am very pleased to be releasing additional expansions of the Microsoft Bounty Programs. Please stop by the Microsoft Networking Lounge at Black Hat, August 5-6, to learn more about these programs; or, visit https://aka.ms/BugBounty. We are raising the Bounty for Defense maximum from $50,000 USD to $100,000 USD. I am also very excited to announce that we are launching a bonus period for Authentication vulnerabilities in the Online Services Bug Bounty.
Out-of-band release for Security Bulletin MS15-078
Today, we released a security bulletin to provide an update for Microsoft Windows. Customers who have automatic updates enabled or apply the update, will be protected. We recommend customers apply the update as soon as possible, following the directions in the security bulletin. More information about this bulletin can be found at Microsoft’s Bulletin Summary page.
July 2015 Security Updates
Today we released security updates for Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Office, Microsoft SQL Server, and Internet Explorer. As a best practice, we encourage customers to apply security updates as soon as they are released. For more information about this month’s security updates and advisories visit the Security TechNet Library. You can also follow the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) team on Twitter at @MSFTSecResponse
Advances in Scripting Security and Protection in Windows 10 and PowerShell V5
In the last several releases of Windows, we’ve been working hard to make the platform much more powerful for administrators, developers, and power users alike. PowerShell is an incredibly useful and powerful language for managing Windows domains. Unfortunately, attackers can take advantage of these same properties when performing “post-exploitation” activities (actions that are performed after a system has been compromised).
June 2015 Updates
Today, as part of Update Tuesday, we released 8 security bulletins. We encourage customers to apply all of these updates. For more information about this month’s security updates, including the detailed view of the Exploitability Index (XI), visit the Microsoft Bulletin Summary webpage. If you are not familiar with how we calculate the XI, a full description can be found here.
May 2015 Updates
Today, as part of Update Tuesday, we released 13 security bulletins. We encourage customers to apply all of these updates. For more information about this month’s security updates, including a detailed view of the Exploitability Index (XI), visit the Microsoft Bulletin Summary webpage. If you are not familiar with how we calculate the XI, a full description can be found here.
Microsoft Bounty Programs Expansion – Azure and Project Spartan
Update 2/22/17: Removed _Guest-to-Host DoS (non-distributed, from a single guest) _from Hyper-V escape bounty list. I am excited to announce significant expansions to the Microsoft Bounty Programs. We are evolving the ‘Online Services Bug Bounty, launching a new bounty for Project Spartan, and updating the Mitigation Bypass Bounty. This continued evolution includes additions to the Online Services Bug Bounty Program:
April 2015 Updates
Today, as part of Update Tuesday, we released 11 security bulletins. We encourage customers to apply all of these updates. For more information about this month’s security updates, including the detailed view of the Exploitability Index (XI), visit the Microsoft Bulletin Summary webpage. If you are not familiar with how we calculate the XI, a full description can be found here.
EMET 5.2 is available (update)
Today, we’re releasing the Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) 5.2, which includes increased security protections to improve your security posture. You can download EMET 5.2 from microsoft.com/emet or directly from here. Following is the list of the main changes and improvements: Control Flow Guard: EMET’s native DLLs have been compiled with Control Flow Guard (CFG).
March 2015 Updates
Today, as part of Update Tuesday, we released 14 security bulletins to address vulnerabilities in Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Office, Microsoft Exchange, and Internet Explorer. We encourage customers to apply all of these updates. For more information about this month’s security updates, including the detailed view of the Exploitability Index (XI) broken down by each Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE), visit the Microsoft Bulletin Summary webpage.
Security Advisory 3046015 released
Today, we released Security Advisory 3046015 to provide guidance to customers in response to the SSL/TLS issue referred to by researchers as “FREAK” (Factoring attack on RSA-EXPORT Keys). Our investigation continues and we’ll take the necessary steps to protect our customers. MSRC Team
February 2015 Updates
Today, as part of Update Tuesday, we released nine security bulletins– three rated Critical and six rated Important in severity, to address 56 unique Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVEs) in Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Office, Internet Explorer, and Microsoft Server software. We encourage you to apply all of these updates. For more information about this month’s security updates, including the detailed view of the Exploitability Index (XI) broken down by each CVE, visit the Microsoft Bulletin Summary webpage.
MS15-011 & MS15-014: Hardening Group Policy
Today we are releasing MS15-011 & MS15-014 which harden group policy and address network access vulnerabilities that can be used to achieve remote code execution (RCE) in domain networks. The MS15-014 update addresses an issue in Group Policy update which can be used to disable client-side global SMB Signing requirements, bypassing an existing security feature built into the product.
January 2015 Updates
Today, as part of Update Tuesday, we released eight security updates– one rated Critical and seven rated Important in severity, to address eight unique Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVEs) in Microsoft Windows. We encourage you to apply all of these updates. For more information about this month’s security updates, including the detailed view of the Exploit Index (XI) broken down by each CVE, visit the Microsoft Bulletin Summary webpage.
A Call for Better Coordinated Vulnerability Disclosure
For years our customers have been in the trenches against cyberattacks in an increasingly complex digital landscape. We’ve been there with you, as have others. And we aren’t going anywhere. Forces often seek to undermine and disrupt technology and people, attempting to weaken the very devices and services people have come to depend on and trust.
Evolving Microsoft's Advance Notification Service in 2015
Our Advance Notification Service (ANS) was created more than a decade ago as part of Update Tuesday to broadly communicate in advance, about the security updates being released for Microsoft products and services each month. Over the years, technology environments and customer needs have evolved, prompting us to evaluate our existing information and distribution channels.
December 2014 Updates
Today, as part of Update Tuesday, we released seven security updates – three rated Critical and four rated Important in severity, to address 24 unique Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVEs) in Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer (IE), Office and Exchange. We encourage you to apply all of these updates. For more information about this month’s security updates, including the detailed view of the Exploit Index (XI) broken down by each CVE, visit the Microsoft Bulletin Summary webpage.
Advance Notification Service for the December 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Today, we provide advance notificationfor the release of seven Security Bulletins. Three of these updates are rated Critical and four are rated as Important in severity. These updates are for Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer (IE), Office and Exchange. As per our monthly process, we’ve scheduled the Security Bulletin release for the second Tuesday of the month, December 9, 2014, at approximately 10 a.
Security Bulletin MS14-068 released
Today, we released an out-of-band security update to address a vulnerability in Kerberos which could allow Elevation of Privilege. This update is for all supported versions of Windows Server and includes a defense-in-depth update for all supported versions of Windows. We strongly encourage customers to apply this update as soon as possible by following the directions in Security Bulletin MS14-068.
Additional information about CVE-2014-6324
Today Microsoft released update MS14-068 to address CVE-2014-6324, a Windows Kerberos implementation elevation of privilege vulnerability that is being exploited in-the-wild in limited, targeted attacks. The goal of this blog post is to provide additional information about the vulnerability, update priority, and detection guidance for defenders. Microsoft recommends customers apply this update to their domain controllers as quickly as possible.
Out-of-band release for Security Bulletin MS14-068
On Tuesday, November 18, 2014, at approximately 10 a.m. PST, we will release an out-of-band security update to address a vulnerability in Windows. We strongly encourage customers to apply this update as soon as possible, following the directions in the security bulletin. More information about this bulletin can be found at Microsoft’s Bulletin Summary page.
Assessing Risk for the November 2014 Security Updates
Today we released fourteen security bulletins addressing 33 unique CVE’s. Four bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical, eight have a maximum severity rating of Important, and two have a maximum severity rating of Moderate. This table is designed to help you prioritize the deployment of updates appropriately for your environment.
MS14-072: .NET Remoting Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability
Today Microsoft shipped MS14-072 to the .NET Framework to address an Elevation of Privilege (EOP) vulnerability in the .NET Remoting feature. This update fixes a specific issue in .NET Remoting that permitted specially crafted remote endpoints to take advantage of this vulnerability. What is .NET Remoting? .NET Remoting is a layer within the .
November 2014 Updates
Today, as part of Update Tuesday, we released 14 security updates – four rated Critical, nine rated Important, and two rated Moderate, to address 33 Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVEs) in Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer (IE), Office, .NET Framework, Internet Information Services (IIS), Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP), Active Directory Federation Services (ADFS), Input Method Editor (IME) (Japanese), and Kernel Mode Driver (KMD).
EMET 5.1 is available
Today, we’re releasing the Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) 5.1 which will continue to improve your security posture by providing increased application compatibility and hardened mitigations. You can download EMET 5.1 from microsoft.com/emet or directly from here. Following is the list of the main changes and improvements: Several application compatibility issues with Internet Explorer, Adobe Reader, Adobe Flash, and Mozilla Firefox and some of the EMET mitigations have been solved.
Advance Notification Service for the November 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Today, we provide advance notification for the release of 16 Security Bulletins. Five of these updates are rated Critical, nine are rated as Important, and two are rated Moderate in severity. These updates are for Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer, Office, Exchange, .NET Framework, Internet Information Services (IIS), Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP), Active Directory Federation Services (ADFS), Input Method Editor (IME) (Japanese), and Kernel Mode Driver (KMD).
Security Advisory 3009008 updated
Today, we announced the availability of SSL 3.0 fallback warnings in Internet Explorer (IE) 11. For more information please visit the IE blog. We have also published an update on the status of the changes we have made to our Azure offerings in response to the SSL 3.0 vulnerability. For more information please visit the Azure blog.
Security Advisory 3010060 released
Today, we released Security Advisory 3010060to provide additional protections regarding limited, targeted attacks directed at Microsoft Windows customers. A cyberattacker could cause remote code execution if someone is tricked into opening a maliciously-crafted PowerPoint document that contains an infected Object Linking and Embedding (OLE) file. As part of this Security Advisory, we have included an easy, one-click Fix itsolution to address the known cyberattack.
Assessing Risk for the October 2014 Security Updates
Today we released eight security bulletins addressing 24 unique CVE’s. Three bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical, and five have a maximum severity rating of Important. This table is designed to help you prioritize the deployment of updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max exploitability Platform mitigations and key notes MS14-058(Kernel mode drivers [win32k.
More Details About CVE-2014-4073 Elevation of Privilege Vulnerability
Today Microsoft shipped MS14-057 to the .NET Framework in order to resolve an Elevation of Privilege vulnerability in the ClickOnce deployment service. While this update fixes this service, developers using Managed Distributed Component Object Model (a .NET wrapped around DCOM) need to take immediate action to ensure their applications are secure.
October 2014 Updates
Today, as part of Update Tuesday, we released eight securityupdates – three rated Critical and five rated Important - to address 24 Common Vulnerabilities & Exposures (CVEs) in Windows, Office, .NET Framework, .ASP.NET, and Internet Explorer (IE). We encourage you to apply all of these updates, but for those who need to prioritize deployment planning, we recommend focusing on the Critical updates first.
Advance Notification Service for the October 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Today, we provide advance notification for the release of nine Security Bulletins. Three of these updates are rated Critical, five are rated as Important, and one is rated Moderate in severity. These updates are for Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer, Office, .NET Framework, and ASP.NET. As per our usual process, we’ve scheduled the Security Bulletin release for the second Tuesday of the month, October 14, 2014, at approximately 10 a.
BlueHat v14 is almost here
It’s that time of year and BlueHat v14 is almost upon us. As always, BlueHat is an opportunity for us to bring the brightest minds in security together, both internal and external, to discuss and tackle some of the hardest problems facing the industry today. Through this conference, our engineering teams get deep technical information and education on the latest threats from proven industry experts.
Bug Bounty Evolution: Online Services
Today marks the next evolution in bounty programs at Microsoft as we launch the Microsoft Online Services Bug Bounty program starting with Office 365. In our mobile first, cloud first world, this is an exciting and logical evolution to our existing bug bounty programs. Office 365 is the first of our online services groups to launch a bounty for vulnerabilities found in their services and we will bring others into the program as we go forward.
September 2014 Security Bulletin Release Webcast and Q&A
Today we’re publishing the September 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast Questions & Answers page. We fielded four questions on various topics during the webcast, with specific bulletin questions focusing primarily on Internet Explorer (MS14-052) and a question about the Windows Update client. We invite you to join us for the next scheduled webcast on Wednesday, October 8, 2014, at 11 a.
Assessing risk for the September 2014 security updates
Today we released four security bulletins addressing 42 unique CVE’s. One bulletin has a maximum severity rating of Critical and the other three have maximum severity Important. This table is designed to help you prioritize the deployment of updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max Exploitability Index Rating Platform mitigations and key notes MS14-052(Internet Explorer) Victim browses to a malicious webpage.
The September 2014 Security Updates
Today, as a part of our regular Update Tuesday process, we released four security bulletins – one rated Critical and three rated Important in severity – to address 42 Common Vulnerabilities & Exposures (CVEs) in Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer, .NET Framework, and Lync Server. We encourage you to apply all of these updates, but for those who need to prioritize, we recommend focusing on the Critical update first.
Advance Notification Service for the September 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Today, we provide advance notification for the release of four Security Bulletins. One of these updates is rated Critical and three are rated as Important in severity. These updates are for Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer, .NET Framework and Lync. As a reminder, we are now using a new format for our Security Bulletin Webcast, scheduled on Wednesday, September 10, at 11 a.
Security Bulletin MS14-045 rereleased
Every month for many years, we’ve released a number of updates focused on the continuous improvement of customers’ experiences with our technology. Historically, these updates happened at different times during the month, with the security-specific ones occurring on the second Tuesday of each month. Recently, to further streamline, we decided to include more of our non-security updates together with our security updates and begin the global release to customers on the second Tuesday of each month.
August 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast and Q&A
Today, we published the August 2014 Security Bulletin webcast questions and answers page along with the webcast replay. We answered ten questions on air, with the majority focusing on the update for Internet Explorer. Here is the video replay: We are aware of some issues related to the recent updates and are working on a fix.
Assessing risk for the August 2014 security updates
Today we released nine security bulletins addressing 37 unique CVE’s. Two bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical while the other seven have a maximum severity rating of Important. This table is designed to help you prioritize the deployment of updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max exploit-ability Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS14-051(Internet Explorer) Victim browses to a malicious webpage.
August 2014 Security Updates
Today, as part of Update Tuesday, we released nine securityupdates – two rated Critical and seven rated Important – to address 37 Common Vulnerabilities & Exposures (CVEs) in SQL Server, OneNote, SharePoint, .NET, Windows and Internet Explorer (IE). We encourage you to apply all of these updates, but for those who need to prioritize their deployment planning, we recommend focusing on the Critical updates first.
Advance Notification Service for the August 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Today, we provide advance notification for the release of nine Security Bulletins. Two of these are rated Critical, and the remaining seven are rated Important in severity. These Updates are for SQL Server, SharePoint, OneNote, .NET, Microsoft Windows, and Internet Explorer. As per our usual process, we’ve scheduled the Security Bulletin release for the second Tuesday of the month, August 12, 2014, at approximately 10 a.
Announcing EMET 5.0
Today, we are excited to announce the general availability of the Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) 5.0. As many of you already know, EMET is a free tool, designed to help customers with their defense in depth strategies against cyberattacks, by helping detect and block exploitation techniques that are commonly used to exploit memory corruption vulnerabilities.
General Availability for Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) 5.0
Today, we are excited to announce the general availability of Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) 5.0. EMET is a free tool, designed to help customers with their defense in depth strategies against cyberattacks, by helping block and terminate the most common techniques adversaries might use in comprising systems. EMET 5.0 further helps to protect with two new mitigations, and with new capabilities giving customers additional flexibility on their deployments.
July 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast and Q&A
Today we published the July 2014 Security Bulletin webcast questions and answers page along with the webcast replay. We answered eight questions on air, with the majority focusing on the update for Internet Explorer. The transcript also includes a question we did not have time to answer on the air.
Security Advisory 2982792 released, Certificate Trust List updated
Today, we are updating the Certificate Trust List (CTL) for all supported releases of Microsoft Windows to remove the trust of mis-issued third-party digital certificates. These certificates could be used to spoof content and perform phishing or man-in-the-middle attacks against web properties. With this update, most customers will be automatically protected against this issue and will not need to take any action.
Assessing risk for the July 2014 security updates
Today we released six security bulletins addressing 29 unique CVE’s. Two bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical, three have maximum severity Important, and one is Moderate. We hope that the table below helps you prioritize the deployment of the updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max exploit-ability Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS14-037(Internet Explorer) Victim browses to a malicious webpage.
July 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Many around the globe have been following the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ closely. Regardless of which country you are supporting, many folks have been impressed by the defensive display put on by keeper Tim Howard in a loss against Belgium. It was a great performance highlighting a strong defense – always a good thing to have, be it on the pitch or on your system.
Advance Notification Service for the July 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Today, we provide advance notification for the release of six Security Bulletins. Two of these are rated Critical, three are rated as Important, and one is rated Moderate in severity. These Updates are for Microsoft Windows and Internet Explorer. This month we will also premier the new format for our Security Bulletin Webcast, scheduled on Wednesday, July 9, at 11 a.
Driving a Collectively Stronger Security Community with Microsoft Interflow
Today, Microsoft is pleased to announce the private preview of Microsoft Interflow, a security and threat information exchange platform for analysts and researchers working in cybersecurity. Interflow uses industry specifications to create an automated, machine-readable feed of threat and security information that can be shared across industries and groups in near real-time.
Microsoft releases Security Advisory 2974294
Today, we released Security Advisory 2974294 to inform global customers about an update for the Microsoft Malware Protection Engine. This update addresses a privately disclosed issue and fixes a vulnerability that could allow a denial of service if the Microsoft Malware Protection Engine scans a specially crafted file. Updates for the Microsoft Malware Protection Engine are sent through security advisories as there is typically no action required to install the update.
June 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast and Q&A
Today we published the June 2014 Security Bulletin webcast questions and answers page along with the webcast replay. We answered six questions on air, with the majority focusing on the updates for TCP and Internet Explorer. The transcript also includes a question we did not have time to answer on the air.
Assessing risk for the June 2014 security updates
Today we released seven security bulletins addressing 66 unique CVE’s. Two bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical while the other five have a maximum severity rating of Important. This table is designed to help you prioritize the deployment of updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max XI Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS14-035 (Internet Explorer) Victim browses to a malicious webpage.
Theoretical Thinking and the June 2014 Bulletin Release
As security professionals, we are trained to think in worst-case scenarios. We run through the land of the theoretical, chasing “what if” scenarios as though they are lightning bugs to be gathered and stashed in a glass jar. Most of time, this type of thinking is absolutely the correct thing for security professionals to do.
Advance Notification Service for the June 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Today we provide advance notification for the release of seven Bulletins, two rated Critical and five rated Important in severity. These Updates are for Microsoft Windows, Microsoft Office and Internet Explorer. The Update for Internet Explorer addresses CVE-2014-1770, which we have not seen used in any active attacks. Also, in case you missed it, last month we released Security Advisory 2871997 to further enhance credentials management and protections on Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Server 2008 R2, and Windows Server 2012.
An Overview of KB2871997
An Overview of KB2871997 Microsoft recently released KB2871997 for Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Server 2008R2, and Windows Server 2012. This blog will give an overview of the feature changes, their impact, and some important configuration changes that can be made in conjunction with the update to further improve system security.
Meet myBulletins: an online security bulletin customization service
Microsoft is committed to promoting a safer, more trusted Internet and providing monthly security updates is one of the ways our customers keep their devices and connections to the Internet more secure. Packaging updates together into a monthly bulletin cycle stems from customer feedback and offers a predictable way to help protect them against newly discovered threats.
May 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast and Q&A
Today we published the May 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast Questions & Answers page. We answered 17 questions in total, with the majority focusing on the update for SharePoint (MS14-022), Group Policy (MS14-025) and Internet Explorer (MS14-029). Here is the video replay: We invite you to join us for the next scheduled webcast on Wednesday, June 11, 2014, at 11 a.
Assessing risk for the May 2014 security updates
Today we released eight security bulletins addressing 13 unique CVE’s. Two bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical while the other six have a maximum severity rating of Important. The table is designed to help you prioritize the deployment of updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max exploit-ability Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS14-029(Internet Explorer) Victim browses to a malicious webpage.
Load Library Safely
Dynamically loading libraries in an application can lead to vulnerabilities if not secured properly. In this blog post we talk about loading a library using LoadLibraryEx() API and make use of options to make it safe. Know the defaults: The library file name passed to LoadLibrary() / LoadLibraryEx() call need not contain an extension.
MS14-025: An Update for Group Policy Preferences
Today, we released an update to address a vulnerability in Group Policy Preferences (MS14-025). Group Policy Preferences was an addition made to Group Policy to extend its capabilities. Among other things, Group Policy Preferences allows an administrator to configure: Local administrator accounts (name of the account, account password, etc) Configure a service or scheduled task (allowed to specify alternate credentials to run as) Mount network drives when a user logs in (allowed to specify alternate credentials to connect with) Group Policy Preferences are distributed just like normal group policy: An XML file containing the settings is written to the SYSVOL share of the domain controllers, and computers periodically query the SYSVOL share (authenticating to it using their computer account) for updates to the group policy.
The May 2014 Security Updates
Today, we released eight security bulletins – two rated Critical and six rated Important – to address 13 Common Vulnerability & Exposures (CVEs) in .NET Framework, Office, SharePoint, Internet Explorer, and Windows. We encourage you to apply all of these updates, but for those who need to prioritize their deployment planning, we recommend focusing on MS14-024, MS14-025 and MS14-029.
Advance Notification Service for the May 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Today we provide Advance Notification Service (ANS) for the release of eight bulletins, two rated Critical and six rated Important in severity. These updates will address vulnerabilities for .NET Framework, Office, Internet Explorer, and Windows. As we do every month, we’ve scheduled the security bulletin release for the second Tuesday of the month, May 13, 2014, at approximately 10:00 a.
Out-of-Band Release to Address Microsoft Security Advisory 2963983
At approximately 10 a.m. PDT, we will release an out-of-band security update to address the issue affecting Internet Explorer (IE) that was first discussed in Security Advisory 2963983. This update is fully tested and ready for release for all affected versions of the browser. The majority of customers have automatic updates enabled and will not need to take any action because protections will be downloaded and installed automatically.
Security Update Released to Address Recent Internet Explorer Vulnerability
Today, we released a security update to address the Internet Explorer (IE) vulnerability first described in Security Advisory 2963983. This security update addresses every version of Internet Explorer. While we’ve seen only a limited number of targeted attacks, customers are advised to install this update promptly. The majority of our customers have automatic updates enabled and so will not need to take any action as protections will be downloaded and installed automatically.
Continuing with Our Community Driven, Customer Focused Approach for EMET
The Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit, best known as EMET, helps raise the bar against attackers gaining access to computer systems. Since the first release of EMET in 2009, our customers and the security community have adopted EMET and provided us with valuable feedback. Feedback both in forums and through Microsoft Premier Support Services, which provides enterprise support for EMET, has helped shape the new EMET capabilities to further expand the range of scenarios it addresses.
Protection strategies for the Security Advisory 2963983 IE 0day
We’ve received a number of customer inquiries about the workaround steps documented in Security Advisory 2963983 published on Saturday evening. We hope this blog post answers those questions. Steps you can take to stay safe The security advisory lists several options customers can take to stay safe. Those options are (in summary):
Microsoft releases Security Advisory 2963983
Today, we released Security Advisory 2963983 regarding an issue that impacts Internet Explorer. At this time, we are only aware of limited, targeted attacks. This issue allows remote code execution if users visit a malicious website with an affected browser. This would typically occur by an attacker convincing someone to click a link in an email or instant message.
More Details about Security Advisory 2963983 IE 0day
Today we released Security Advisory 2963983 regarding a potential vulnerability in Internet Explorer reported by FireEye and currently under investigation. We are working closely with FireEye to investigate this report of a vulnerability which was found used in very limited targeted attack: - the vulnerability is a “use-after-free” memory corruption and the exploit observed seems to target IE9, IE10 and IE11;
April 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast and Q&A
Today we published the April 2013 Security Bulletin Webcast Questions & Answers page. We answered 13 questions in total, with the majority focusing on the update for Internet Explorer (MS14-018) and the Windows 8.1 Update (KB2919355). Two questions that were not answered on air have been included on the Q&A page.
Assessing risk for the April 2014 security updates
Today we released four security bulletins addressing 11 unique CVE’s. Two bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical while the other two have a maximum severity rating of Important. We hope that the table below helps you prioritize the deployment of the updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max exploitability Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS14-017(Word) Victim opens a malicious RTF or DOC/DOCX file.
MS14-019 – Fixing a binary hijacking via .cmd or .bat file
Command (.cmd) and batch (.bat) files can be directly provided as input to the CreateProcess as if it is an executable. CreateProcess uses the cmd.exe automatically to run the input .cmd or .bat. Today, with the bulletin MS14-019 we are fixing a vulnerability, where in particular scenario it is possible to hijack the cmd.
The April 2014 Security Updates
T. S. Elliot once said, “What we call the beginning is often the end. And to make an end is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from.” So as we put one season to bed, let’s start another by looking at the April security updates. Today, we release four bulletins to address 11 CVEs in Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer and Microsoft Office.
Advance Notification Service for the April 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Today we provide advance notification for the release of four bulletins, two rated Critical and two rated Important in severity. These updates address issues in Microsoft Windows, Office and Internet Explorer. The update provided through MS14-017 fully addresses the Microsoft Word issue first described in Security Advisory 2953095. This advisory also included a Fix it to disable opening rich-text format (RTF) files within Microsoft Word.
The Next Leap Forward in Cyber Defense: Taking Action to Help Defeat Adversaries
It is often said that attackers have an advantage, because the defenders have to protect every part of their systems all the time, while the attacker only has to find one way in. This argument oversimplifies the security landscape and the real strength that defenders can achieve if they work together.
Microsoft Releases Security Advisory 2953095
Today we released Security Advisory 2953095 to notify customers of a vulnerability in Microsoft Word. At this time, we are aware of limited, targeted attacks directed at Microsoft Word 2010. An attacker could cause remote code execution if someone was convinced to open a specially crafted Rich Text Format (RTF) file or a specially crafted mail in Microsoft Outlook while using Microsoft Word as the email viewer.
Security Advisory 2953095: recommendation to stay protected and for detections
Today, Microsoft released Security Advisory 2953095 to notify customers of a vulnerability in Microsoft Word. At this time, we are aware of limited, targeted attacks directed at Microsoft Word 2010. This blog will discuss mitigations and temporary defensive strategies that will help customers to protect themselves while we are working on a security update.
March 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast and Q&A
Today we published the March 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast Questions & Answers page. We answered eight questions in total, with the majority focusing on the updates for Windows (MS14-016) and Internet Explorer (MS14-012). One question that was not answered on air has been included on the Q&A page. Here is the video replay.
When ASLR makes the difference
We wrote several times in this blog about the importance of enabling Address Space Layout Randomization mitigation (ASLR) in modern software because it’s a very important defense mechanism that can increase the cost of writing exploits for attackers and in some cases prevent reliable exploitation. In today’s blog, we’ll go through ASLR one more time to show in practice how it can be valuable to mitigate two real exploits seen in the wild and to suggest solutions for programs not equipped with ASLR yet.
Assessing risk for the March 2014 security updates
Today we released five security bulletins addressing 23 unique CVE’s. Two bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical while the other three have a maximum severity rating of Important. We hope that the table below helps you prioritize the deployment of the updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max Exploit-ability Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS14-012(Internet Explorer) Victim browses to a malicious webpage.
The March 2014 Security Updates
This month we release five bulletins to address 23 unique CVEs in Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer and Silverlight. If you need to prioritize, the update for Internet Explorer addresses the issue first described in Security Advisory 2934088, so it should be at the top of your list. While that update does warrant your attention, I want to also call out another impactful update.
Advance Notification Service for the March 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Today we provide advance notification for the release of five bulletins for March 2014, two rated Critical and thee rated Important in severity. These updates address issues in Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer and Silverlight. The update provided in MS14-012 fully addresses the issue first described in Security Advisory 2934088. While we have seen a limited number of attacks using this issue, they have only targeted Internet Explorer 10.
Announcing EMET 5.0 Technical Preview
Today, we are thrilled to announce a preview release of the next version of the Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit, better known as EMET. You can download EMET 5.0 Technical Preview here. This Technical Preview introduces new features and enhancements that we expect to be key components of the final EMET 5.
Announcing the Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) 5.0 Technical Preview
I’m here at the Moscone Center, San Francisco, California, attending the annual RSA Conference USA 2014. There’s a great crowd here and many valuable discussions. Our Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) engineering teams have been working hard on the next version of EMET, which helps customers increase the effort attackers must make to compromise a computer system.
Fix it tool available to block Internet Explorer attacks leveraging CVE-2014-0322
Today, we released Security Advisory 2934088 to provide guidance to customers concerned about a new vulnerability found in Internet Explorer versions 9 and 10. This vulnerability has been exploited in limited, targeted attacks against Internet Explorer 10 users browsing to www.vfw.org and www.gifas.asso.fr. We will cover the following topics in this blog post:
Microsoft Releases Security Advisory 2934088
Today, we released Security Advisory 2934088 regarding an issue that impacts Internet Explorer 9 and 10. Internet Explorer 6, 7, 8 and 11 are not affected. At this time, we are only aware of limited, targeted attacks against Internet Explorer 10. This issue allows remote code execution if users browse to a malicious website with an affected browser.
February 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast and Q&A
Today we published the February 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast Questions & Answers page. We answered seven questions on air, with the majority of questions focusing on the MSXML bulletin (MS14-005) and the revision to Security Advisory 2915720. One question that was not answered on air has been included on the Q&A page.
Assessing risk for the February 2014 security updates
Today we released seven security bulletins addressing 31 unique CVE’s. Four bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical while the other three have a maximum severity rating of Important. We hope that the table below helps you prioritize the deployment of the updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max Exploit-ability Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS14-010(Internet Explorer) Victim browses to a malicious webpage.
Safer Internet Day 2014 and Our February 2014 Security Updates
In addition to today being the security update release, February 11 is officially Safer Internet Day for 2014. This year, we’re asking folks to Do 1 Thing to stay safer online. While you may expect my “Do 1 Thing” recommendation would be to apply security updates, I’m guessing that for readers of this blog, that request would be redundant.
Update (2/10) - Advance Notification Service for February 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Update as of February 10, 2014 We are adding two updates to the February release. There will be Critical-rated updates for Internet Explorer and VBScript in addition to the previously announced updates scheduled for release on February 11, 2014. These updates have completed testing and will be included in tomorrow’s release.
Antimalware Support for Windows XP and the January 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast and Q&A
Today we’re publishing the January 2014 Security Bulletin Webcast Questions & Answers page. We answered 16 questions in total, with the majority of questions focusing on the Dynamics AX bulletin (MS14-004), the update for Microsoft Word (MS14-001) and the re-release of the Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 updates provided through MS13-081.
A Look Into the Future and the January 2014 Bulletin Release
In January, there are those who like to make predictions about the upcoming year. I am not one of those people. Instead, I like to quote Niels Bohr who said, “Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future.” However, I can say without a doubt that change is afoot in 2014.
Assessing risk for the January 2014 security updates
Today we released four security bulletins addressing six CVE’s. All four bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Important. We hope that the table below helps you prioritize the deployment of the updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max exploit-ability rating Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS14-002(NDProxy, a kernel-mode driver) Attacker able to run code at a low privilege level inside an application sandbox exploits this vulnerability to elevate privileges to SYSTEM.
Advance Notification Service for the January 2014 Security Bulletin Release
Today we provide advance notification for the release of four bulletins for January 2014. All bulletins this month are rated Important in severity and address vulnerabilities in Microsoft Windows, Office, and Dynamics AX. The update provided in MS14-002 fully addresses the issue first described in Security Advisory 2914486. We have only seen this issue used in conjunction with a PDF exploit in targeted attacks and not on its own.
Predictions for 2014 and the December 2013 Security Bulletin Webcast, Q&A, and Slide Deck
Today we’re publishing the December 2013 Security Bulletin Webcast Questions & Answers page. We answered 17 questions in total, with the majority of questions focusing on the Graphics Component bulletin (MS13-096), Security Advisory 2915720 and Security Advisory 2905247. We also wanted to note a new blog on the Microsoft Security Blog site on the top cyber threat predications for 2014.
Software defense: mitigating common exploitation techniques
In our previous posts in this series, we described various mitigation improvements that attempt to prevent the exploitation of specific classes of memory safety vulnerabilities such as those that involve stack corruption, heap corruption, and unsafe list management and reference count mismanagement. These mitigations are typically associated with a specific developer mistake such as writing beyond the bounds of a stack or heap buffer, failing to correctly track reference counts, and so on.
Assessing risk for the December 2013 security updates
Today we released eleven security bulletins addressing 24 CVE’s. Five bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical while the other six have a maximum severity rating of Important. We hope that the table below helps you prioritize the deployment of the updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max XI Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS13-096(GDI+ TIFF parsing) Victim opens malicious Office document.
MS13-098: Update to enhance the security of Authenticode
Today we released MS13-098, a security update that strengthens the Authenticode code-signing technology against attempts to modify a signed binary without invalidating the signature. This update addresses a specific instance of malicious binary modification that could allow a modified binary to pass the Authenticode signature check. More importantly, it also introduces further hardening to consider a binary “unsigned” if any modification has been made in a certain portion of the binary.
Omphaloskepsis and the December 2013 Security Update Release
There are times when we get too close to a topic. We familiarize ourselves with every aspect and nuance, but fail to recognize not everyone else has done the same. Whether you consider this myopia, navel-gazing, or human nature, the effect is the same. I recognized this during the recent webcast when someone asked the question – “What’s the difference between a security advisory and a security bulletin?
MS13-106: Farewell to another ASLR bypass
Today we released MS13-106 which resolves a security feature bypass that can allow attackers to circumvent Address Space Layout Randomization (ASLR) using a specific DLL library (HXDS.DLL) provided as part of Microsoft Office 2007 and 2010. The existence of an ASLR bypass does not directly enable the execution of code and does not represent a risk by itself, since
Security Advisory 2916652 released, Certificate Trust List updated
Microsoft is updating the Certificate Trust List (CTL) for all supported releases of Microsoft Windows to remove the trust of a mis-issued third-party digital certificate, which could be used to spoof content and perform phishing or man-in-the-middle attacks against web properties. With this action, customers will be automatically be protected against this issue.
BlueHat v13 is Coming
This week, starting Thursday, we’ll be hosting our 13th edition of BlueHat. I’m always so impressed with the level of knowledge we attract to each BlueHat, and while the event is invite-only, we’ll be sharing glimpses into the event via this blog and the hashtag #BlueHat. For each of the past six years I have had the honor to work among some of the most talented engineers I have ever met, here at Microsoft.
Advance Notification Service for December 2013 Security Bulletin Release
Today we’re providing advance notification for the release of 11 bulletins, five Critical and six Important, for December 2013. The Critical updates address vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer, Windows, Microsoft Exchange and GDI+. The Critical update for GDI+ fully addresses the publicly disclosed issue described in Security Advisory 2896666. This release won’t include an update for the issue described in Security Advisory 2914486.
Microsoft Releases Security Advisory 2914486
Today we released Security Advisory 2914486 regarding a local elevation of privilege (EoP) issue that affects customers using Microsoft Windows XP and Server 2003. Windows Vista and later are not affected by this local EoP issue. A member of the Microsoft Active Protections Program (MAPP) found this issue being used on systems compromised by a third-party remote code execution vulnerability.
Security and policy surrounding bring your own devices (BYOD)
As the proliferation of devices continues to capture the imagination of consumers, and has ignited what is referred to as bring your own device (BYOD) revolution, many IT departments across the globe are now facing increased security considerations. While organizations encourage BYOD for cost savings and productivity, it is also important to have robust security policies supporting BYOD.
MBSA 2.3 and the November 2013 Security Bulletin Webcast, Q&A, and Slide Deck
Today we’re publishing the November 2013 Security Bulletin Webcast Questions & Answers page. The majority of questions focused on the ActiveX Kill Bits bulletin (MS13-090) and the advisories. We also answered a few general questions that were not specific to any of this month’s updates, but that may be of interest.
Assessing risk for the November 2013 security updates
Today we released eight security bulletins addressing 19 CVE’s. Three bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical while the other five have a maximum severity rating of Important. We hope that the table below helps you prioritize the deployment of the updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max Exploit-ability Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS13-090(ActiveX killbit) Victim browses to a malicious webpage.
Authenticity and the November 2013 Security Updates
If you haven’t had a chance to see the movie Gravity, I highly recommend you take the time to check it out. The plot moves a bit slowly at times, but director Alfonso Cuaron’s work portrayal of zero gravity is worth the ticket price alone. Add in stellar acting and you end up with an epic movie that really makes you miss the shuttle program.
Introducing Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit (EMET) 4.1
In June 2013, we released EMET 4.0 and customer response has been fantastic. Many customers across the world now include EMET as part of their defense-in-depth strategy and appreciate how EMET helps businesses prevent attackers from gaining access to computers systems. Today, we’re releasing a new version, EMET 4.1, with updates that simplify configuration and accelerate deployment.
Security Advisory 2868725: Recommendation to disable RC4
In light of recent research into practical attacks on biases in the RC4 stream cipher, Microsoft is recommending that customers enable TLS1.2 in their services and take steps to retire and deprecate RC4 as used in their TLS implementations. Microsoft recommends TLS1.2 with AES-GCM as a more secure alternative which will provide similar performance.
Security Advisory 2880823: Recommendation to discontinue use of SHA-1
Microsoft is recommending that customers and CA’s stop using SHA-1 for cryptographic applications, including use in SSL/TLS and code signing. Microsoft Security Advisory 2880823 has been released along with the policy announcement that Microsoft will stop recognizing the validity of SHA-1 based certificates after 2016. Background Secure Hashing Algorithm 1 (SHA-1) is a message digest algorithm published in 1995 as part of NIST’s Secure Hash Standard.
Technical details of the targeted attack using IE vulnerability CVE-2013-3918
Over the weekend we became aware of an active attack relying on an unknown remote code execution vulnerability of a legacy ActiveX component used by Internet Explorer. We are releasing this blog to confirm one more time that the code execution vulnerability will be fixed in today’s UpdateTuesday release and to clarify some details about the second vulnerability reported.
ActiveX Control issue being addressed in Update Tuesday
Late last Friday, November 8, 2013, a vulnerability, CVE-2013-3918, affecting an Internet Explorer ActiveX Control was publically disclosed. We have confirmed that this vulnerability is an issue already scheduled to be addressed in “Bulletin 3”, which will be released as MS13-090, as listed in the November Advanced Notification Service (ANS). The security update will be distributed to customers tomorrow via Windows Update at approximately 10:00 AM PDT.
Clarification on Security Advisory 2896666 and the ANS for the November 2013 Security Bulletin Release
Today, we’re providing advance notification for the release of eight bulletins, three Critical and five Important, for November 2013. The Critical updates address vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer and Microsoft Windows, and the Important updates address issues in Windows and Office. While this release won’t include an update for the issue first described in Security Advisory 2896666, we’d like to tell you a bit more about it.
Software defense: safe unlinking and reference count hardening
Object lifetime management vulnerabilities represent a very common class of memory safety vulnerability. These vulnerabilities come in many shapes and sizes, and are typically quite difficult to mitigate generically. Vulnerabilities of this type result commonly from incorrect accounting with respect to reference counts describing active users of an object, or improper handling of certain object states or error conditions.
CVE-2013-3906: a graphics vulnerability exploited through Word documents
Recently we become aware of a vulnerability of a Microsoft graphics component that is actively exploited in targeted attacks using crafted Word documents sent by email. Today we are releasing Security Advisory 2896666 which includes a proactive Fix it workaround for blocking this attack while we are working on the final update.
Microsoft Releases Security Advisory 2896666
Today we released Security Advisory 2896666 regarding an issue that affects customers using Microsoft Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008, Microsoft Office 2003 through 2010, and all supported versions of Microsoft Lync. We are aware of targeted attacks, largely in the Middle East and South Asia. The current versions of Microsoft Windows and Office are not affected by this issue.
Bounty Evolution: $100,000 for New Mitigation Bypass Techniques Wanted Dead or Alive
Those who know me personally or follow me on Twitter are familiar with my obsession with karaoke. I do it as often as I can rope people into going with me, never forcing anyone to sing, though invariably everyone does – or at least sings from the sidelines to the songs they know.
Software Defense: mitigating heap corruption vulnerabilities
Heap corruption vulnerabilities are the most common type of vulnerability that Microsoft addresses through security updates today. These vulnerabilities typically occur as a result of programming mistakes that make it possible to write beyond the bounds of a heap buffer (a spatial issue) or to place a heap allocated object in an unexpected state such as by using the object after it has been freed (a temporal issue).
Introduction: Chris Betz, new head of MSRC
By way of introduction, I am Chris Betz, the leader of the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC). I’m stepping in to fill the shoes of Mike Reavey, who has moved on to become the General Manager of Secure Operations, still within Trustworthy Computing. Since joining the MSRC, I’ve spent time immersed in learning the business, meeting our global team of security research and response professionals and many of the other teams we frequently interact with here at Microsoft.
10 years of Update Tuesdays
On October 1, 2003, Microsoft announced it would move to a monthly security bulletin cadence. Today, marks 10 years since that first monthly security update. We looked at many ways to improve our security preparedness and patch timing was the number one customer request. Your feedback was clear and we delivered a predictable schedule.
October 2013 Security Bulletin Webcast, Q&A, and Slide Deck
Today we’re publishing the October 2013 Security Bulletin Webcast Questions & Answers page. We fielded 11 questions during the webcast, with specific bulletin questions focusing primarily on the SharePoint (MS13-084) and Kernel-Mode Drivers (MS13-081) bulletins. There was one additional question that we were unable to answer on air, and we have included a response to that question on the Q&A page.
Assessing risk for the October 2013 security updates
Today we released eight security bulletins addressing 25 CVE’s. Four bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical while the other four have a maximum severity rating of Important. We hope that the table below helps you prioritize the deployment of the updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max Exploit-ability Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS13-080(Internet Explorer) Victim browses to a malicious webpage.
Congratulations to James Forshaw Recipient of Our First $100,000 Bounty for New Mitigation Bypass Techniques!
Congratulations to James Forshaw for coming up with a new exploitation technique to get our first ever $100,000 bounty. A security vulnerability researcher with Context Information Security, James already came in hot with design level bugs he found during the IE11 Preview Bug Bounty, and we’re thrilled to give him even more money for helping us improve our platform-wide security by leaps.
MS13-080 addresses two vulnerabilities under limited, targeted attacks
Today we released MS13-080 which addresses nine CVEs in Internet Explorer. This bulletin fixes multiple security issues, including two critical vulnerabilities that haven been actively exploited in limited targeted attacks, which we will discuss in details in this blog entry. CVE-2013-3893: the final patch after Fix it workaround Previously, Microsoft released Security Advisory 2887505 and made available the Fix it workaround 51001 to provide earlier protection to all customers for an actively exploited security issue that was reported to us.
An update on the bounty programs
Back in June of this year, we announced three new bounty programs that will pay researchers for techniques that bypass built-in OS mitigations and protections, for defenses that stop those bypasses and for vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer 11 Preview. This past Friday, we provided some additional details about the results of the IE11 Preview bounty program, which covered the first 30 days of the preview period.
The October 2013 security updates
This month we release eight bulletins – four Critical and four Important - which address 25* unique CVEs in Microsoft Windows, Internet Explorer, SharePoint, .NET Framework, Office, and Silverlight. For those who need to prioritize their deployment planning, we recommend focusing on MS13-080, MS13-081, and MS13-083. Our Bulletin Deployment Priority graph provides an overview of this month’s priority releases (click for larger view).
Bounty News Update: Bountiful Harvest
Fall is a season traditionally associated with a harvest after planting the seeds and tending the crops. Today I’m proud to announce the names of six very smart people who have helped us make our products more secure by participating in our new bounty programs. When we launched our bounty programs in June this year, we had a few strategic goals in mind:
Advance Notification Service for October 2013 Security Bulletin Release
Today we’re providing advance notification for the release of eight bulletins, four Critical and four Important, for October 2013. The Critical updates address vulnerabilities in Internet Explorer, .NET Framework and Windows. The Critical update for Internet Explorer will be a cumulative update which will address the publicly disclosed issue described in Security Advisory 2887505.
Software Defense: mitigating stack corruption vulnerabilties
Introduction One of the oldest forms of memory safety exploitation is that of stack corruption vulnerabilities, with several early high-profile exploits being of this type. It seems fitting therefore to kick off this Software Defense series by looking at the status of software defense today with respect to this age-old problem.
Software Defense Series: Exploit mitigation and vulnerability detection
Software Defense is a broad topic requiring a multipronged approach including: - the processes and tooling associated with secure development (that we try and encapsulate within the Microsoft SDL), - core OS countermeasures that make exploitation of a given vulnerability more difficult for an attacker, - steps to secure the hardware on which the software runs,
CVE-2013-3893: Fix it workaround available
Today, we released a Fix it workaround tool to address a new IE vulnerability that had been actively exploited in extremely limited, targeted attacks. This Fix it makes a minor modification to mshtml.dll when it is loaded in memory to address the vulnerability. This Fix it workaround tool is linked fromSecurity Advisory 2887505 that describes this issue.
Microsoft Releases Security Advisory 2887505
Today we released Security Advisory 2887505 regarding an issue that affects Internet Explorer. There are only reports of a limited number of targeted attacks specifically directed at Internet Explorer 8 and 9, although the issue could potentially affect all supported versions. This issue could allow remote code execution if an affected system browses to a website containing malicious content directed towards the specific browser type.
September 2013 Security Bulletin Webcast, Q&A, and Slide Deck
Today we’re publishing the September 2013 Security Bulletin Webcast Questions & Answers page. The majority of questions focused on Office bulletins, especially SharePoint Server (MS13-067). We received multiple Office related questions that were very similar in nature, so the questions have been merged, as applicable, with consolidated answers provided. We were able to answer six questions on air, and those we did not have time for have been included on the Q&A page.
Assessing risk for the September 2013 security updates
Today we released thirteen security bulletins addressing 47 CVE’s. Four bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical while the other ten have a maximum severity rating of Important. We hope that the table below helps you prioritize the deployment of the updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max Exploit-ability Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS13-069(Internet Explorer) Victim browses to a malicious webpage.
Lovely tokens and the September 2013 security updates
Helen Hunt Jackson famously wrote, “By all lovely tokens September is here, with summer’s best of weather and autumn’s best of cheer.” I share Helen’s clear adoration for this time of year. As a sports fan, there are so many “lovely tokens” to enjoy. The baseball pennant race is heating up, college and pro football are underway, and various soccer leagues (real football to the rest of the world) continue.
MS13-068: A difficult-to-exploit double free in Outlook
MS13-068 addresses a memory corruption vulnerability accessible by simply previewing a message in the Outlook Preview Pane. As such, we’ve rated this security vulnerability as Critical and we encourage customers to deploy the security update. However, in this case, we believe this particular vulnerability will be difficult to exploit for code execution.
Advance Notification Service for September 2013 Security Bulletin Release
In celebration of kids heading back to school, today we’re providing advance notification for the release of 14 bulletins, four Critical and 10 Important, for September 2013. The Critical updates address issues in Internet Explorer, Outlook, SharePoint and Windows. As always, we’ve scheduled the bulletin release for the second Tuesday of the month, Sept.
August 2013 Security Bulletin Webcast, Q&A, and Slide Deck
Today we’re publishing the August 2013 Security Bulletin Webcast Questions & Answers page. We fielded 13 questions on various topics during the webcast, with specific bulletin questions focusing primarily on Exchange Server (MS13-061) and Windows Kernel (MS13-063). There were 3 additional questions during the webcast that we were unable to answer on air, and we have also answered those on the Q&A page.
Assessing risk for the August 2013 security updates
Today we released eight security bulletins addressing 23 CVE’s. Three bulletins have a maximum severity rating of Critical while the other five have a maximum severity rating of Important. We hope that the table below helps you prioritize the deployment of the updates appropriately for your environment. Bulletin Most likely attack vector Max Bulletin Severity Max Exploit-ability Index Likely first 30 days impact Platform mitigations and key notes MS13-059(Internet Explorer) Victim browses to a malicious webpage.

God Is Love - 1 John 4:7-21